# Can someone describe E=mc^2 to me in laymans terms

1. Oct 17, 2012

### Niaboc67

Please do your best to describe E=Mc^2 to me in the most plain English you know and as basic as possible without leaving out details. Any links you think would help would be great.

Thank you

2. Oct 17, 2012

### r4z0r84

3. Oct 17, 2012

### sarsonlarson5

I'm not sure if this really helps:

Energy = Mass*(speed of light)^2

You probably already know this. However, in case you don't, I hope this helps. As you can see, this number can get very large. Anyway, imagine a hydrogen atom - essentially a proton. This hydrogen atom has a very small mass (can't remember what it was in kg). To find the energy of this hydrogen atom- just multiply by the square of the speed of light - which should amount to a fairly large number in comparison to the mass of a hydrogen atom. This is because the theorem above states the amount of energy that the mass would be turned into if it was turned into raw energy!

Once again- hope this helps!

Last edited by a moderator: Apr 1, 2013
4. Oct 17, 2012

### Staff: Mentor

https://www.physicsforums.com/blog.php?b=3588 [Broken]

Last edited by a moderator: May 6, 2017