GCSE Physics Revision: Conservation and Dissipation of Energy

5th April 2017

GCSE Physics Revision help

Conservation and dissipation of energy - all you need to know for your GCSE Physics


There are some key facts you need to know when it comes to Energy for your Physics Exam. Take a look!


  • There are lots of different types of energy: kinetic, electrical, chemical, gravitational potential, elastic, sound, heat….

  • Energy can not be created

  • Energy can not be destroyed

  • Energy can be transferred

  • Energy can be stored - for example in batteries. This chemical energy is stored and then turned into electrical energy which in turn produces a reaction

  • Energy can be dissipated

  • Energy can be transformed from one form to another - for example, chemical energy is transformed into electrical energy in power plants

  • Energy transfer diagrams only show what useful energy has been transferred. However, non-useful energy is also created in most transfers - for example, heat or noise energy

  • Energy efficiency is measured by what proportion of energy is transferred usefully and how much energy is ‘wasted’

  • The efficiency of a device can be calculated using the following formulas:

efficiency = useful energy out ÷ total energy in (for a decimal efficiency)

efficiency = (useful energy out ÷ total energy in) × 100  - use this formula when you want to find the percentage!

To make sure you know everything you need to know for your GCSE Physics exam, have a listen to our songs all about energy which can be found here, here and here, and make sure to do the quiz to ensure that you’ve got all the right answers! Good luck!


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