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thermal pollution

The excessive heating of a body of water.


A measure of how hot (or cold) something is; specifically, a measure of the average kinetic energy of the particles in an object.

heat engine

A machine that uses heat to do work.


A substance that reduces the transfer of thermal energy.

change of state

The conversion of a substance from one physical form to another.

states of matter

The physical forms in which a substance can exit.

specific heat capacity

The amount of energy needed to change the temperature of 1 kg of a substance by 1 degree C.


The transfer of energy through matter or space as electromagnetic waves, such as visible light and infrared waves.


The transfer of thermal energy by the movement of a liquid or a gas.


A substance that does not conduct thermal energy very well.


A substance that conducts thermal energy very well.


The transfer of thermal energy from one substance to another through direct contact.

thermal energy

The total energy of the particles that make up an object.


The transfer of energy between objects that are at different temperatures.

absolute zero

The lowest possible temperature (0 K, -273 degree C)

thermal expansion

The increase in volume of a substance due to an increase in temperature.

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