Bitesize has changed! We're updating subjects as fast as we can. Visit our new site to find Bitesize guides and clips - and tell us what you think!

Home > Science > Energy, electricity and forces > Energy transfer and storage

Science

Energy transfer and storage

Print

Heat and temperature

Heat and temperature are not the same thing, although both are concerned with thermal energy.

Heat

The heat an object contains is the amount of its thermal energy, measured in joules or J.

Temperature

The temperature of an object is to do with how hot or cold it is, measured in degrees Celsius. Note that the unit of temperature is written as °C, (not °c or oC).

thermometer

A thermometer is used to measure the temperature of an object

A thermometer is used to measure the temperature of an object

Let's look at two examples to see the difference between heat and temperature.

Example 1

A swimming pool at 30°C is at a lower temperature than a cup of tea at 80°C. But the swimming pool contains more water, so it stores more thermal energy than the cup of tea.

Example 2

To boil water we must increase its temperature to 100°C. It takes longer to boil a large beaker of water than a small beaker because the large beaker contains more water and needs more thermal energy to reach 100°C.

One larger beaker of water and one smaller beaker of water. Both are being heated with bunsen burners. The smaller beaker boils first.

Activity

Energy transfer and storage activity

Transfer your energy into this activity.

Play

Gut Instinct

Can you match Viral Vinnie's appetite for English, Maths and Science?

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.