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ARTICLE

Humans and the water cycle

We are becoming increasingly aware of our impacts on nature, but unfortunately many of the things we do have become so ingrained in our way of life that it is hard to change. Different countries ...

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ARTICLE

Non-renewable energy sources

Energy comes from many sources, and to describe these sources we use two terms: renewable and non-renewable. Non-renewable energy resources cannot be replaced – once they are used up, they will ...

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ARTICLE

What is energy?

This is both a simple and complex question. Energy is in everything – it is often described as ‘the ability to do work’. Almost all food energy comes originally from sunlight. The chemical ...

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ARTICLE

Lightning explained

Lightning is a large-scale natural spark discharge that occurs within the atmosphere or between the atmosphere and the Earth’s surface. On discharge, a highly electrically conductive plasma ...

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ARTICLE

Electricity and sensors

All materials are made up of tiny particles called atoms. Atoms are made up of even smaller particles called protons, neutrons and electrons. The protons found in the atom have a positive charge ...

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ARTICLE

Plasmas explained

We happily live in the Earth’s gaseous lower atmosphere composed of a mixture of gases – primarily nitrogen and oxygen. However, if we move upwards from the Earth’s surface, the environment ...

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ARTICLE

Renewable energy sources

Renewable energy is fuel that comes from a source that can be replenished in a short amount of time. This includes solar, wind, water, geothermal power and bioenergy. While renewable energy ...

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TEACHER PLD

Linking ideas, activities and lessons

In the primary classroom, even though teachers and students generally spend the day together, it cannot be assumed that students will experience their learning as coherent, connected or ...

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ARTICLE

Energy sources through time – timeline

Use this timeline to explore how humans have relied on fossil fuels in the past and how we are looking for, and using, new energy sources. 200,000 BC - Fire used Records of the first controlled ...

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ARTICLE

Nuclear energy

For many people, the term ‘nuclear energy’ is associated with negative events and feelings. However, it is important to be informed about any topic before developing your own conclusions. What is ...

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ARTICLE

Using solar energy

Solar energy is transformed into other energy forms for our use on Earth – energy for food (chemical energy), electrical energy and heat energy. Food Solar energy (sunlight) is crucial for our ...

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ARTICLE

Hydro power

Hydro power uses water to generate electricity. Most hydro electricity is generated from fresh water, but there is also marine-generated electricity that uses the movement of waves. Rivers flow ...

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ARTICLE

Heat pumps and energy transfer

Heat is the flow of energy from a body at higher temperature to one at lower temperature when they are placed in thermal contact. An everyday example of this is the natural cooling down of a hot ...

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ARTICLE

Solar cars

Solar cars are powered by electricity through the use of solar energy. Solar panels are attached to the surface (generally, the top) of the vehicle. Photovoltaic (PV) cells convert the Sun's ...

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ACTIVITY

Making a solar oven

In this activity, students will learn about using the Sun’s energy to meet our needs. They will be introduced to concepts around solar energy needed for solar cooking (heat) – dark colours for ...

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ARTICLE

Hidden heat

Converting states of matter from one form into another requires the involvement of heat energy. For example, converting water at 100°C into steam at 100°C requires the input of 2260 kJ per kg of ...

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ARTICLE

Solar energy

The Sun is the source of almost all our energy. It is a huge ball of hot gases that gives off energy as heat and light. This is called solar energy, which just means energy from the Sun. The ...

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ARTICLE

Resistors

Resistors control how much electric charge flows through a circuit each second – the size of the current in the circuit. They do this by controlling how difficult it is for electric charges to ...

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