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Heat transfer and efficiency

Heat can be transferred from place to place by conduction, convection and radiation.
Dark matt surfaces are better at absorbing heat energy than light shiny surfaces.
Heat energy can be lost from homes in many different ways and there are ways of
reducing these heat losses.…

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Liquids and gases are fluids. The particles in these fluids can move from place to place.
Convection occurs when particles with a lot of heat energy in a liquid or gas move and
take the place of particles with less heat energy. Heat energy is transferred from hot

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Heat transfer by radiation
All objects give out and take in thermal radiation, which is also called infrared
radiation. The hotter an object is, the more infrared radiation it emits.

Light from the sun reaching earth

Infrared radiation is a type of electromagnetic radiation that involves waves. No particles…

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Heat escape routes
Take a look at this image showing heat loss from a house.

red shows where most heat is lost - through the windows and roof

Heat is lost:

through the roof
through windows
through gaps around the door
through the walls
through the floor
Heat energy is…

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Forms of energy
You should be able to recognise the main types of energy. One way to remember the
different types of energy is to learn this sentence:
Most Kids Hate Learning GCSE Energy Names
Each capital letter is the first letter in the name of a type of energy.…

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Organic food

Sound Energy released by vibrating objects


Electrical Energy in moving or static electric charges


Elastic potential Stored energy in stretched or squashed objects


Nuclear Stored in the nuclei of atoms

Nuclear fuel assembly

Energy transfer
Different types of energy can be transferred from one type…

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Process of using chemical energy

This diagram shows the energy transfer diagram for the useful energy transfer in an
electric lamp. You can see that the electric lamp transfers or converts electrical
energy into light energy.

Process of using electrical energy

Notice that these energy transfer diagrams only show the…

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Energy cannot be created or destroyed. It can only be transferred from one form to
another or moved. Energy that is 'wasted', like the heat energy from an electric lamp,
does not disappear. Instead, it is transferred into the surroundings and spreads out so
much that it becomes very difficult…

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Note that the efficiency of a device will always be less than 100%.


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