if you had 70 J of potential energy and converted it into 55 J of kinetic energy, what accounts for the missing 15 J?



  1. 0 Votes

    It would depend on how it was converted, but generally heat is one of the sources of energy dissipation.  This occurs especially in converting kinetic to potential, like with regenerative braking some of the kinetic energy is lost to friction/heat.

  2. 0 Votes

    Most of the time energy is lost in a conversion of potential to kinetic energy due to the creation of heat, friction, and wind resistance.  As the first law of thermodynamics says, in all situations, energy is neither created nor destroyed, so the energy that appears to be lost has to go somewhere.  Most of the time the energy can be accounted for by the creation of heat which is lost to the surroundings of the system.  Since many of our systems include huge open spaces, there is no noticeable change in heat to the system, but that energy is always there.

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