What do we really need, energy or power? This was a question proposed to me at the beginning of the semester and it really made me think. Energy is a property of matter that can be converted into work, heat, or radiation. It is the capacity for doing work, generating heat, and emitting light or radiation. Power is the rate of spending energy or energy per unit time. Immediately, I thought the answer was energy since you need energy to have power. But then I heard that the answer was power and it boggled my mind, but after it was explained it really opened my mind.
We do need energy to have power but what would we do without power. We can't live without power. We really need power because it is energy spent per unit time and what is the point of energy if we cant control it. There are six fundamental forms of energy.
They are mechanical, thermal, chemical, electrical, nuclear, and electromagnetic. Mechanical energy is kinetic and potential energy. Kinetic energy is the energy that is possessed by a body due to its motion. And Potential energy is the Energy that a body possesses by virtue of its physical position above the reference level.
Therefore, it depends on height above the reference level and the mass of the object. So potential energy is the mass gravitational force height. Thermal energy is the energy of the random motion of particles of a substance. An example of this would be warming up by a campfire or taking a hot bath.
Chemical energy is energy that is stored in the chemical bonds that hold molecules together. When certain chemicals combine or react, energy is released usually in the form of heat. Some examples of this would be a tank of gasoline, coal, and natural gas. Electrical energy is the energy of electrons in motion. It is usually generated by the rotation of a conductor in a magnetic field and it is easily converted to other forms of energy. Nuclear energy is energy that is locked in the nucleus of an atom and is released by destruction of mass.
There are two types of nuclear energy: Fusion and Fission. Fusion is the process of combining two small nuclei into one intermediate one and Fission is the splitting of an atom. Radiant energy is the energy carried in a beam of light produced when charged particles are accelerated. An example of this would be getting a suntan.