<TED Worksheet>
18. Why don’t perpetual motion machines ever work?
Netta Schramm
<5:10>    June 2017

 

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≪Questions:Why don’t perpetual motion machines ever work?≫

1. What are perpetual motion machines?

 

 

2. List two examples of perpetual motion machines.

(1)                                     

(2)                                    

 

3. Perpetual motion machines sound great, but they do not work. Why not?

 

 




4. What is the first law of thermodynamics?

 

 

 

5. Robert Boyle came up with an idea for a self-watering pot. He theorized that capillary action might keep the water cycling around the bowl, but it did not work. Why not?

 

 

 

6. What is the second law of thermodynamics? What does it tell us?

 

 




7. Why is it too early to say we will never discover perpetual motion machines?

 

 

8. According to the speaker, there is one thing that seems truly perpetual. What is it?

 








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≪Answers:Why don’t perpetual motion machines ever work?≫

1. What are perpetual motion machines?
Devices that can work indefinitely without any external energy source.

 

 

2. List two examples of perpetual motion machines.

(1) a windmill that produced the breeze it needed to keep rotating

(2) a lightbulb whose glow provided its own electricity

 

 

3. Perpetual motion machines sound great, but they do not work. Why not?
Because they violate one or more (of the) fundamental laws of thermodynamics.

 




4. What is the first law of thermodynamics?
Energy can’t be created or destroyed. (You cannot get out more energy than you put in.)

 

 

5. Robert Boyle came up with an idea for a self-watering pot. He theorized that capillary action might keep the water cycling around the bowl, but it did not work. Why not?
Because if the capillary action is strong enough to overcome gravity and draw the water up, it would also prevent it from falling back into the bowl.

 

 

6. What is the second law of thermodynamics? What does it tell us?
Energy tends to spread out through processes like friction.

 




7. Why is it too early to say we will never discover perpetual motion machines?
Because there is still so much we do not understand about the universe. (Perhaps we will find new exotic forms of matter that will force us to revisit the laws of thermodynamics)

 

 

8. According to the speaker, there is one thing that seems truly perpetual. What is it?
Our search. (We will never stop looking.)

 

 

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