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  • Created by: josh
  • Created on: 24-05-12 10:47

Appliances transfer energy but not all the energy is transferred in useful ways. The choice of appliance is influenced by their efficiency and cost effectiveness.

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:

  • magnetic
  • kinetic (movement energy)
  • heat (thermal energy)
  • light
  • gravitational potential
  • chemical
  • sound
  • electrical
  • elastic potential
  • nuclear.

Types of energy explained

Type of energyDescription




energy in magnets and electromagnets



A bullet cutting a playing card

the energy in moving objects – also called movement energy



Burning match

also called thermal energy




also called radiant energy

gravitational potential

sky divers in freefall under gravity (

Sky divers

stored energy in raised objects



Organic food

stored energy in fuel, foods and batteries




energy released by vibrating objects




energy in moving charges or static electric charges

elastic potential

catapult stores elastic energy (


stored energy in stretched or squashed objects



Nuclear fuel assembly

Energy transfer diagrams

Different types of energy can be transferred from one type to another. Energy transfer diagrams show each type of energy, whether it is stored or not, and the processes taking place as energy is transferred.

This energy transfer diagram shows the useful energy transfer in a car engine. You can see that a car engine transfers chemical energy, which is stored in the fuel, into kinetic energy in the engine and wheels.

chemical energy in the fuel is the energy input, the car engine is the process, and energy output is in the form of kinetic energy in the engine and wheels (

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…


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