MadSci Network: Physics

Re: Is electricity considered to be matter?

Date: Tue Apr 20 10:06:21 1999
Posted By: Kobus Oosthuizen, Grad student, Electrical Engineering, Atio Tellecommunication
Area of science: Physics
ID: 924403809.Ph


The simplest answer would be to say Yes and No. But then this is a 
relativity question.

Einstein derived the Equation E=M*C*C. It is well known as part of the 
relativity theory. This theory states that all matter is energy and all 
energy is matter.
Energy = Mass * Speed of light squared.
It is interesting that this theory states that the faster a object moves 
relative to a stationary observer the heavier the object will become in 
relation to the reference used by the observer.

Electricity is an entity not to be understood easily. We cannot pin point 
what electricity is. Is it the flow of electrons or is the flow of energy 
that just distorts the position of electrons when current pass trough a 
conductor.  The same for light – is it particles or is it waves – the 
Behavior points to both. We theorize to try and understand these concepts 
that we wish to manipulate to do something for us.We only study it's 

In Einstein’s Equation we find Energy (E) and Matter (M) .According to the 
third part of the Equation (C) - the speed of light. Thus Energy and 
Matter is not two distinct entities – They are related by the speed at 
which light travels. One can not possibly classify Electricity or Light as 
pure matter or pure energy because we still don’t understand the 
underlying mysteries of the creation in such depth. If one could answer 
this one would hold the key to the Unified Field Theory. 

The best way to put the answer –All energy is matter and all matter is 
energy. These two just transforms from one shape to the other and then 
back depending on the environment that it find itself in. As a parable – 
Is water ice and is ice water – They are the same except that the energy 
contained in them differs.

I would say Electricity is energy when I observe it as a wave propagating 
trough a medium – and electricity is matter when it is seen as electrons 
moving. It is both in a way because the electrons in a conductor move 
slower trough the medium than the actual wave. 

Hope the kids will understand how something can be different and yet be 
the same thing. The butterfly and the worm ? Cold and Heat....

Current Queue | Current Queue for Physics | Physics archives

Try the links in the MadSci Library for more information on Physics.

MadSci Home | Information | Search | Random Knowledge Generator | MadSci Archives | Mad Library | MAD Labs | MAD FAQs | Ask a ? | Join Us! | Help Support MadSci

MadSci Network,
© 1995-1999. All rights reserved.