The kinetic energy of an object is the energy which it possesses due to its motion. It is defined as the work needed to accelerate a body of a given mass from rest to its stated velocity. Having gained this energy during its acceleration, the body maintains this kinetic energy unless its speed changes. The same amount of work is done by the body in decelerating from its current speed to a state of rest.
In classical mechanics, the kinetic energy of a non-rotating object of mass m traveling at a speed v is ½ mv². In relativistic mechanics, this is only a good approximation when v is much less than the speed of light.
Famous quotes containing the words kinetic and/or energy:
“The poem has a social effect of some kind whether or not the poet wills it to have. It has kinetic force, it sets in motion ... [ellipsis in source] elements in the reader that would otherwise be stagnant.”
—Denise Levertov (b. 1923)
“Just as we are learning to value and conserve the air we breathe, the water we drink, the energy we use, we must learn to value and conserve our capacity for nurture. Otherwise, in the name of human potential we will slowly but surely erode the source of our humanity.”
—Elaine Heffner (20th century)