Heat Energy: Definition, Sources, and Examples

In nature, there are different forms of energy, one of them is heat energy. Heat energy is an important form of energy in our lives since it supports day-to-day human’s activities like cooking, ironing, heating, etc. The heat energy is produced due to the transfer of heat from a warm system to a cool system.

Heat energy is not just the nature of an object that feels hot, but it is energy transferred from an object to another as a result of temperature transfer. To know more about what heat energy is, what the sources of heat energy are, and the examples of heat energy, you can dive into our post to find the information. Here you go!

Heat Energy Definition, Sources, and Examples

What Is Heat Energy?

According to some sources, heat energy is a form of energy transferred from one object to another as a result of temperature transfer. The addition of heat to a substance definitely increases its internal temperature. It is known that heat is defined as the net amount of thermal energy of a system.

Heat energy is generated because of the motion of subatomic particles like ions, atoms, and molecules into solids, liquids, and gases. Heat energy goes on from one system to another system due to the temperature difference between the two systems.

There are various kinds of energy sources that can benefit our lives with their existence. In terms of distribution, energy sources can be divided into two groups, i.e., renewable energy sources and non-renewable energy sources.

    • Renewable energy are the energy resources that are sustainable or inexhaustible sources such as solar, geothermal, waves, biomass, wind, water, etc.
    • Non-renewable energy sources are the energy resources that can run out such as oil, coal, natural gas, and nuclear energy.

Sources of Heat Energy

There are five sources of heat energy, including the sun, solar energy, earth/ geothermal energy, electricity, fire, and the friction of two objects. To better understand the sources of heat energy, we will show them point-by-point below.

1) The Sun/Solar Energy

There is no doubt that the sun is the most powerful source of heat energy for the earth and all of its inhabitants, providing light and life to our planet. Solar energy has a lot of benefits for humans, plants, and animals. The sun/solar energy is the only thing that drives every living thing to survive.

    • For humans, the sun’s thermal energy really helps our bodies to form vitamin D and warms our planet during the day, so you can dry your clothes and other things.
    • For plants, solar energy is very beneficial and helpful for the process of making food through photosynthesis.
    • For animals, the sun and solar energy provide benefits through plants, i.e., in the form of oxygen and food. Just like humans, the sun’s energy also helps animal bodies form vitamin D.

2) The Earth/ Geothermal Energy

In addition to solar energy, another heat energy source that can also be gained from the earth is geothermal energy. Inside the earth, there is a source of heat energy that comes from rocks. Earth energy can also be used as an alternative energy source that produces electricity and also as a heating source in buildings.

3) Fire Energy

It is known that fire is a substance in the form of heat and light. The source of fire heat can be produced from fuel oil, gas, or coal. When fuels are burned, it really generates energy. Some common fuels include coal, wood, gasoline, kerosene, petrol, oil, diesel, and charcoal.

There are some benefits to fire heat energy, including helping to warm the body in cold weather, cooking food, and lighting candles or oil lamps when it is dark.

4) Electricity

This heat energy source is used everywhere that can be produced from heat energy and be converted into heat energy. Some of the devices that convert electrical energy into heat energy are irons, water heaters, and induction cookers. Well, it is based on the principle of the heating effect of electric current.

5) The Friction of Two Objects

Heat energy can also be produced from the friction of two objects. As an example, when you are in a cold place, you can rub your palms together quickly, and the result is that your palms will feel warm. This was also done by primordial men, who produced heat by rubbing two stones or two sticks of wood together.

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