energy and matter

i recently read that matter can neither be created nor destroyed, that it can only change form. and the same goes for energy. whats been keeping me up at night is that i think there has to be some exception to those laws. what about a piece of ash in a high wind? the piece of ash desintigrates, and then what does it become if it isnt destroyed? i think that should be the destruction of the piece of ash.

energy, however, is different. i agree it cant be destroyed, but what about created? what if there is a small spark from a match? isnt that creating energy? someone please explain these rules to me so i can stop thinking about it.

I hate physics. They make so much sense when you’ve got the rules but before that you can ask millions of questions and get no answers.

Like dropping a lead ball and a baseball off a building. They fall at the same speed. Why? I hate that! One thing goes up slower than the other they should go down at different speeds.

The ash disintegrates yes, but it is not “destroyed.” The atoms are still there, just in smaller groups. You cannot destroy matter in the sense of making it cease to be, but it can be converted into energy (some might say that it IS energy)

Hairy guy. Ive also discussed that here.

I asked the same question about energy and matter.

But its the second rule about energy that will make me post a new post, I do hope to see you there.

Everything as I know is made of light. Since electrons are the smallest particles which everything is composed of. Therefore, the world is more light than anything.

Magius quote: What’s your take?

As far as my physics goes, quarks are the smallest particles of which atoms are made. Nutrino’s are suppose to be the smallest particles in our universe, containing almost no weight (atomic). We have instruments that can actually detect nutrino’s but no theory to date has been even nearly correct about the pattern and origin of nutrino’s.

What’s your take?

(Steps down a verbal notch.)

Electrons are not light. Photons are light. Electrons are electricity. By your reasoning, Lee, the world is more electricity than anything.

Shocking, I know (uuugghh, terrible pun)

electrons are not electricity.

Hence the

It’s necessary for some.

still, that is no excuse for just being wrong :laughing:


To answer your question: You are transferring energy from your arm to the match.

According to Stephen Hawking, one exception may exist to the law of conservation. He theorizes that a black hole can become so compact, it disappears from the universe; that is, it ceases to exist.


Matter is energy. According to Einstein, matter is “a highly-localized energy field.”

That exhausts my knowledge of, and interest in, physics.

about laws of conservation

from what i understand , Stephen Hawking says that a black hole gives off radiation ( x rays i believe) and because of this they slowly evaporate or die out TAKEING WITH IT all the information it consumed.

Meaning, everything that goes into a black hole is lost from the universe and can never known or measured because it vanishes with the black hole when it dies…

so… matter/ energy and or the information about matter/energy can be destroyed … but i thought the laws stated that they cannot be destroyed…

sorry that was me… forgot to log in…

Wow, silver! You and I must be watching the same episodes of Nova.

You are right. Hawking predicted (correctly) that black holes could be located by the radiation they emit.

I guess the law of conservation will have to be amended to: “Matter and energy cannot be created or destroyed by ordinary chemical means – except in black holes and certain parts of California.”

Noticed the Stephen Hawking posts. I have just recently been reading “A Brief History of Time”. What else would you reccomend? So far, he’s very fascinating and easy to understand. Also, Imagistar, what the heck is “Nova”? Cable TV show?

Certain parts of California huh? :unamused:
Anyway I didn’t get that from Nova (don’t even know what that is) but from one of his Cambridge lectures off the net. ( i guess ill have to keep looking around for the answer to the conservation problem, but hey, u might be right!)

I’m so glad to see others who are interested in his work, you people are just about the only ones I know

Skeptic: I Strongly recommend The Universe In A Nutshell; I read that one before I read A Brief History of Time and I found it much easier to thoroughly understand. Plus, it’s a bit more interesting, in my opinion anyway. (Also the layouts of the two books are very different).
By the way, I hope your reading the illustrated version of a Brief History of Time!

oh god … sorry, me again

I propose “The Friendly Guide to the Universe” by Nancy Hathaway. I have never read its equal. It is all encompassing, thorough, with a scent of humour to keep you interested through the long and tiresome equations, numbers, trajectories, life spans, electron decays,etc ,etc - that usually have the average person sleeping or putting the book down by the fifth page. Personally, I would have read it even without the humour, my point here is, that it was a pleasant read and I would suggest it to anyone, even those without any knowledge of astronomy or astro-physics. It will take you from beginner to advanced through myriad examples that even the greatest layman would be able to associate with.



(1) In 1992, filmmaker Errol Morris made a feature-length documentary called A Brief History of Time. It is about Hawking and his ideas. But it is also about the difference between liberty (a physical state) and freedom (a psychic state).

Morris shows that while Hawking may be confined to a wheelchair, he is freer than most of us with legs.

The flick was an improbable success, and it should be available at most movie-rental outlets.

(2) Nova is a nationally-syndicated PBS science TV program that originates in Boston. It has been around for decades. It is a gem in a medium that sells corn flakes and considers programming an interruption of commercials.

Interesting! I will look for that video at the library next time I am there. So Nova is a PBS program? I will look into this as well. Thanks for the input. I had no idea that he was in a wheelchair.