All moving things have kinetic energy. It is energy possessed by an object due to its motion or movement. These include very large things, like planets, and very small ones, like atoms. The heavier a thing is, and the faster it moves, the more kinetic energy it has.
Now let's see this illustration below.
There is a small and large ball resting on a table.
Let us say both balls will fall into the bucket of water.
What is going to happen?
You will notice that the smaller ball makes a little splash as it falls into the bucket. The heavier ball makes a very big splash. Why?
Note the following:
1. Both balls had potential energy as they rested on the table.
2. By resting up on a high table, they also had gravitational energy.
3. By moving and falling off the table (movement), potential and gravitational energy changed to Kinetic Energy. Can you guess which of the balls had more kinetic energy? (The big and heavier ball)
Let's see another classic example.
If you are in a hot room and you turn on the fan, what do you begin to feel? Air (wind). The speedy movement of the fan's blades has kinetic energy, which is then transferred into air (wind) that you now feel.
Other examples of Kinetic Energy include a moving car, moving wheel, and a moving arrow.
Click to see a good example of kinetic energy in use.
Can you give your own examples?
Next, we shall look at Mechanical Energy.