Matter and Energy: Principles of Matter and Thermodynamics by Paul Fleisher

By Paul Fleisher

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He has also created several pieces of educational software, including the award-winning Perplexing Puzzles. Paul has taught in Programs for the Gifted in Richmond, Virginia, since 1978. He is also active in civic organizations that work for peace and social justice. In 1988, he received the Virginia Education Association's Award for Peace and International Relations, and in 1999 he was awarded the Thomas Jefferson Medal for Outstanding Contributions to Natural Science Education. In his spare time, you may find Paul walking through the woods, gardening, or fishing on the Chesapeake Bay.

It is a form of energy. In the early 1800s, James Prescott Joule began studying how the energy of motion changes into heat. Joule and his fellow scientists lived at a time when steam engines were being used in many industries. Wherever he looked, Joule could see examples of energy being converted from one form to another. Steam engines got their energy by burning coal, a source of chemical energy. The engines turned the chemical energy into the motion of pistons, wheels, and pulleys. That energy was then used to do work of many different kinds.

For example, a lamp wastes part of its electrical energy by producing heat as well as light. If you put your hand near a lightbulb, you can feel it. Household appliances like blenders, vacuum cleaners, washing machines, and refrigerators also produce heat 47 The Second Law of Thermodynamics as they work. Automobiles produce useless heat in their exhaust and in the friction of their moving parts. Even a baseball thrown in the air loses some of its energy to the heat of friction as it rubs against the molecules of the air.

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