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This text is designed to acquaint students with the physical, ecological, social, and political principles of environmental science. Scientific method is used to analyze and understand the interrelationships between humans and the natural environment. This test shows how ecological realities and the material desire of humans often clash, leading to environmental degradation and pollution.

The flow of energy 

Introduction

Energy is the ability to do work . Work is done when a force is applied to an object over a distance. Any moving object has kinetic energy or energy of motion, and it thus can do work. Similarly, work has to be done on an object to change its kinetic energy. The kinetic energy of an object of mass m size 12{m} {} and speed v size 12{v} {} is given by the relation E = 1 / 2 mv 2 size 12{E=1/2 ital "mv" rSup { size 8{2} } } {} .

Sometimes energy can be stored and used at a later time. For example, a compressed spring and water held back by a dam both have the potential to do work. They are said to possess potential energy . When the spring or water is released its potential energy is transformed into kinetic energy and other forms of energy such as heat. The energy associated to the gravitational force near the surface of the earth is potential energy. Other forms of energy are really combinations of kinetic and potential energy. Chemical energy, for example, is the electrical potential energy stored in atoms. Heat energy is a combination of the potential and kinetic energy of the particles in a substance.

Forms of energy

Mechanical energy puts something in motion. It moves cars and lifts elevators. A machine uses mechanical energy to do work. The mechanical energy of a system is the sum of its kinetic and potential energy. Levers, which need a fulcrum to operate, are the simplest type of machine. Wheels, pulleys and inclined planes are the basic elements of most machines. 

Chemical energy is the energy stored in molecules and chemical compounds, and is found in food, wood, coal, petroleum and other fuels. When the chemical bonds are broken, either by combustion or other chemical reactions, the stored chemical energy is released in the form of heat or light. For example, muscle cells contain glycogen. When the muscle does work the glycogen is broken down into glucose. When the chemical energy in the glucose is transferred to the muscle fibers some of the energy goes into the surroundings as heat.

Electrical energy is produced when unbalanced forces between electrons and protons in atoms create moving electrons called electric currents. For example, when we spin a copper wire through the poles of a magnet we induce the motion of electrons in the wire and produce electricity. Electricity can be used to perform work such as lighting a bulb, heating a cooking element on a stove or powering a motor. Note that electricity is a "secondary" source of energy. That means other sources of energy are needed to produce electricity.

 

Radiant energy is carried by waves. Changes in the internal energy of particles cause the atoms to emit energy in the form of electromagnetic radiation which includes visible light, ultraviolet (UV) radiation, infrared (IR) radiation, microwaves, radio waves, gamma rays, and X-rays. Electromagnetic radiation from the sun, particularly light, is of utmost importance in environmental systems because biogeochemical cycles and virtually all other processes on earth are driven by them.

Questions & Answers

How we are making nano material?
LITNING Reply
what is a peer
LITNING Reply
What is meant by 'nano scale'?
LITNING Reply
What is STMs full form?
LITNING
scanning tunneling microscope
Sahil
what is Nano technology ?
Bob Reply
write examples of Nano molecule?
Bob
The nanotechnology is as new science, to scale nanometric
brayan
nanotechnology is the study, desing, synthesis, manipulation and application of materials and functional systems through control of matter at nanoscale
Damian
Is there any normative that regulates the use of silver nanoparticles?
Damian Reply
what king of growth are you checking .?
Renato
What fields keep nano created devices from performing or assimulating ? Magnetic fields ? Are do they assimilate ?
Stoney Reply
why we need to study biomolecules, molecular biology in nanotechnology?
Adin Reply
?
Kyle
yes I'm doing my masters in nanotechnology, we are being studying all these domains as well..
Adin
why?
Adin
what school?
Kyle
biomolecules are e building blocks of every organics and inorganic materials.
Joe
anyone know any internet site where one can find nanotechnology papers?
Damian Reply
research.net
kanaga
sciencedirect big data base
Ernesto
Introduction about quantum dots in nanotechnology
Praveena Reply
what does nano mean?
Anassong Reply
nano basically means 10^(-9). nanometer is a unit to measure length.
Bharti
do you think it's worthwhile in the long term to study the effects and possibilities of nanotechnology on viral treatment?
Damian Reply
absolutely yes
Daniel
how to know photocatalytic properties of tio2 nanoparticles...what to do now
Akash Reply
it is a goid question and i want to know the answer as well
Maciej
characteristics of micro business
Abigail
for teaching engĺish at school how nano technology help us
Anassong
How can I make nanorobot?
Lily
Do somebody tell me a best nano engineering book for beginners?
s. Reply
there is no specific books for beginners but there is book called principle of nanotechnology
NANO
how can I make nanorobot?
Lily
what is fullerene does it is used to make bukky balls
Devang Reply
are you nano engineer ?
s.
fullerene is a bucky ball aka Carbon 60 molecule. It was name by the architect Fuller. He design the geodesic dome. it resembles a soccer ball.
Tarell
what is the actual application of fullerenes nowadays?
Damian
That is a great question Damian. best way to answer that question is to Google it. there are hundreds of applications for buck minister fullerenes, from medical to aerospace. you can also find plenty of research papers that will give you great detail on the potential applications of fullerenes.
Tarell
what is the Synthesis, properties,and applications of carbon nano chemistry
Abhijith Reply
Mostly, they use nano carbon for electronics and for materials to be strengthened.
Virgil
is Bucky paper clear?
CYNTHIA
carbon nanotubes has various application in fuel cells membrane, current research on cancer drug,and in electronics MEMS and NEMS etc
NANO
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Source:  OpenStax, Ap environmental science. OpenStax CNX. Sep 25, 2009 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col10548/1.2
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