## Detail Page

This Java simulation lets learners explore how energy is transformed in simple systems. Use a slider to heat or cool blocks of iron or brick to see the energy flow. Next, build your own system to convert mechanical, light, or chemical energy into electrical or thermal energy. The simulation allows students to visualize energy transformation and describe how energy flows in various systems. It specifically addresses the Second Law of Thermodynamics -- some forms of energy are more useful than others. Through examples from everyday life, it also bolsters understanding of conservation of energy.

This item is part of a larger collection of simulations developed by the Physics Education Technology project (PhET).
Subjects Levels Resource Types
Classical Mechanics
- Work and Energy
= Conservation of Energy
= Mechanical Power
Thermo & Stat Mech
- First Law
= Heat Transfer
- Second and Third Law
= Entropy
- Thermal Properties of Matter
= Temperature
- Middle School
- Elementary School
- Instructional Material
= Activity
= Interactive Simulation
Intended Users Formats Ratings
- Learners
- Educators
- application/java
- text/html
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Free access
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Keywords:
Conservation Law, Law of Conservation, energy flow, energy forms, energy types, modeling energy flow, thermal energy
Record Cloner:
Metadata instance created April 25, 2013 by Caroline Hall
Record Updated:
October 22, 2018 by Caroline Hall
Other Collections:

### Next Generation Science Standards

#### Energy (HS-PS3)

Students who demonstrate understanding can: (9-12)
• Develop and use models to illustrate that energy at the macroscopic scale can be accounted for as either motions of particles or energy stored in fields. (HS-PS3-2)

#### Disciplinary Core Ideas (K-12)

Definitions of Energy (PS3.A)
• Energy is a quantitative property of a system that depends on the motion and interactions of matter and radiation within that system. That there is a single quantity called energy is due to the fact that a system's total energy is conserved, even as, within the system, energy is continually transferred from one object to another and between its various possible forms. (9-12)
• At the macroscopic scale, energy manifests itself in multiple ways, such as in motion, sound, light, and thermal energy. (9-12)
Conservation of Energy and Energy Transfer (PS3.B)
• Conservation of energy means that the total change of energy in any system is always equal to the total energy transferred into or out of the system. (9-12)
• Energy cannot be created or destroyed, but it can be transported from one place to another and transferred between systems. (9-12)
• The availability of energy limits what can occur in any system. (9-12)
Energy in Chemical Processes (PS3.D)
• Although energy cannot be destroyed, it can be converted to less useful forms—for example, to thermal energy in the surrounding environment. (9-12)

#### Crosscutting Concepts (K-12)

Systems and System Models (K-12)
• Models can be used to predict the behavior of a system, but these predictions have limited precision and reliability due to the assumptions and approximations inherent in models. (9-12)
• Models (e.g., physical, mathematical, computer models) can be used to simulate systems and interactions—including energy, matter, and information flows—within and between systems at different scales. (9-12)
Energy and Matter (2-12)
• The transfer of energy can be tracked as energy flows through a designed or natural system. (6-8)
• Energy may take different forms (e.g. energy in fields, thermal energy, energy of motion). (6-8)
• Changes of energy and matter in a system can be described in terms of energy and matter flows into, out of, and within that system. (9-12)
• Energy cannot be created or destroyed—it only moves between one place and another place, between objects and/or fields, or between systems. (9-12)

#### NGSS Science and Engineering Practices (K-12)

Developing and Using Models (K-12)
• Modeling in 9–12 builds on K–8 and progresses to using, synthesizing, and developing models to predict and show relationships among variables between systems and their components in the natural and designed worlds. (9-12)
• Use a model based on evidence to illustrate the relationships between systems or between components of a system. (9-12)

#### NGSS Nature of Science Standards (K-12)

Developing and Using Models (K-12)
• Modeling in 9–12 builds on K–8 and progresses to using, synthesizing, and developing models to predict and show relationships among variables between systems and their components in the natural and designed worlds. (9-12)

### AAAS Benchmark Alignments (2008 Version)

#### 4. The Physical Setting

4D. The Structure of Matter
• 6-8: 4D/M3ab. Atoms and molecules are perpetually in motion. Increased temperature means greater average energy of motion, so most substances expand when heated.
• 6-8: 4D/M3cd. In solids, the atoms or molecules are closely locked in position and can only vibrate. In liquids, they have higher energy, are more loosely connected, and can slide past one another; some molecules may get enough energy to escape into a gas. In gases, the atoms or molecules have still more energy and are free of one another except during occasional collisions.
4E. Energy Transformations
• 3-5: 4E/E2a. When warmer things are put with cooler ones, the warmer things get cooler and the cooler things get warmer until they all are the same temperature.
• 3-5: 4E/E2b. When warmer things are put with cooler ones, heat is transferred from the warmer ones to the cooler ones.
• 6-8: 4E/M1. Whenever energy appears in one place, it must have disappeared from another. Whenever energy is lost from somewhere, it must have gone somewhere else. Sometimes when energy appears to be lost, it actually has been transferred to a system that is so large that the effect of the transferred energy is imperceptible.
• 6-8: 4E/M2. Energy can be transferred from one system to another (or from a system to its environment) in different ways: 1) thermally, when a warmer object is in contact with a cooler one; 2) mechanically, when two objects push or pull on each other over a distance; 3) electrically, when an electrical source such as a battery or generator is connected in a complete circuit to an electrical device; or 4) by electromagnetic waves.
• 6-8: 4E/M4. Energy appears in different forms and can be transformed within a system. Motion energy is associated with the speed of an object. Thermal energy is associated with the temperature of an object. Gravitational energy is associated with the height of an object above a reference point. Elastic energy is associated with the stretching or compressing of an elastic object. Chemical energy is associated with the composition of a substance. Electrical energy is associated with an electric current in a circuit. Light energy is associated with the frequency of electromagnetic waves.
• 6-8: 4E/M6. Light and other electromagnetic waves can warm objects. How much an object's temperature increases depends on how intense the light striking its surface is, how long the light shines on the object, and how much of the light is absorbed.

#### 11. Common Themes

11B. Models
• 3-5: 11B/E4. Models are very useful for communicating ideas about objects, events, and processes. When using a model to communicate about something, it is important to keep in mind how it is different from the thing being modeled.
• 6-8: 11B/M4. Simulations are often useful in modeling events and processes.

### NSES Content Standards

Con.B: Physical Science
• 5-8: Motion & Forces
• 9-12: Motions & Forces
• 9-12: Conservation of Energy & Increase in Disorder
ComPADRE is beta testing Citation Styles!

AIP Format
(PhET, Boulder, 2013), WWW Document, (https://phet.colorado.edu/en/simulation/energy-forms-and-changes).
AJP/PRST-PER
PhET Simulation: Energy Forms and Changes, (PhET, Boulder, 2013), <https://phet.colorado.edu/en/simulation/energy-forms-and-changes>.
APA Format
PhET Simulation: Energy Forms and Changes. (2013). Retrieved August 11, 2020, from PhET: https://phet.colorado.edu/en/simulation/energy-forms-and-changes
Chicago Format
PhET. PhET Simulation: Energy Forms and Changes. Boulder: PhET, 2013. https://phet.colorado.edu/en/simulation/energy-forms-and-changes (accessed 11 August 2020).
MLA Format
PhET Simulation: Energy Forms and Changes. Boulder: PhET, 2013. 11 Aug. 2020 <https://phet.colorado.edu/en/simulation/energy-forms-and-changes>.
BibTeX Export Format
@misc{ Title = {PhET Simulation: Energy Forms and Changes}, Publisher = {PhET}, Volume = {2020}, Number = {11 August 2020}, Year = {2013} }
Refer Export Format

%T PhET Simulation: Energy Forms and Changes
%D 2013
%I PhET
%C Boulder
%O application/java

EndNote Export Format

%0 Electronic Source
%D 2013
%T PhET Simulation: Energy Forms and Changes
%I PhET
%V 2020
%N 11 August 2020
%9 application/java

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The AIP Style presented is based on information from the AIP Style Manual.

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Physics Front
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