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What is energy? From wind to solar and nuclear, we explain the basics of global power

31st August 2017

Energy cannot be created or destroyed; it can only be converted from one form into another. This rule, one of the fundamental rules of physics, is the first law of thermodynamics, and it plays a part in all aspects of life.

What is energy?

In physics, energy is defined as the ability to do ‘work’. This could be heating something up, thermal work, or moving something, known as mechanical work. There are many different kinds of energy including kinetic, gravitational potential, thermal, nuclear and magnetic. When it comes to providing energy for human use, the biggest form we receive energy is when it has been converted into electrical energy.

What is electrical energy?

Electricity is the movement of electric charge, usually known as the flow of electrons through a conducting material. Electricity generation is the process of making electrical energy from other forms of energy.


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