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History of energy

  1. Dec 22, 2004 #1


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    How did it came into being?

    Did it all strated when someone (Huygens?) discovered that the quantity 1/2mv^2 was (almost) conserved in some collision experiments?

    Or was it discovered purely analytically from the laws of motion that when a force acted on a particle on a certain distance, it produced a variation of this bizzare 1/2mv^2 quantity.

    Or was it discovered "backward"? I.e. through the need for the "potential energy" of an object in a gravitationnal field (pendulum)?
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 23, 2004 #2


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    The discoveries of the concepts of potential and kinetic energies are not attribitued to one person,it's like in the case of the invention of the wheel.It was there,but we don't know the guy who's responsible.The only thing we know is that the famous germen mathematician Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz discovered the law of conservation of Kinetic energy in perfect collisions.It wasn't Christiaan Huygens.

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