I was trying to study exactly how current in a wire is used to do so much in our life and how the energy is converted. But the only methods I have found are by using the resistance of the conductor to heat it up (either to produce light or just for heating purposes) or by converting it into kinetic energy through the use of electromagnetic induction. I guess you can also add transistors and logic gates for computational ability in our devices.

But is that really the extent of how we use electricity to power our technology? I've been trying to look for an exception but I can't seem to find any, even the speakers use induction.

You can say that LEDs are another example as they use electrons jumping down energy levels to emit EM radiation compared to using heat. But that is also essentially how light is produced from heat and blackbody radiation so it's still the same thing really.

It just seems weird that we only really use 2 methods when it comes to converting electricity into useful work and energy. Even going backwards we only use photoelectric effect and magnetic induction to produce electricity.

  • $\begingroup$ Heat is a unavoidable by product of having imperfect systems. Your definition of things is a bit weird. Offcourse if you define all things to be the same then qll things are the same. $\endgroup$
    – joojaa
    Commented May 13, 2022 at 2:55
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    $\begingroup$ Saying that an LED basically produces light from heat and black body radiation is basically saying that an LED works like an incandescent lamp when it fundamentally doesn't. An LED certainly does not operate on heat. Neither do lasers. Gas discharge lamps could be said to operate on heat since you need it to to be a plasma which means getting it hot. You can say that LEDs, lasers, blackbody radiation, any EM emissions really all function with electrons dropping down but you can't say that they all operate on heat. There's are electrostatics and piezo crystals which is not induction. $\endgroup$
    – DKNguyen
    Commented May 13, 2022 at 4:16
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    $\begingroup$ See this answer: physics.stackexchange.com/a/625769/245976 which, if I understand it correctly, says that gas discharge lamps work by direct electron excitation rather than heat (although to be able to directly excite the electrons with electricity you need to get it into the plasma state first which involves getting it hot). $\endgroup$
    – DKNguyen
    Commented May 13, 2022 at 4:20
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    $\begingroup$ Consider battery charging and discharging. These are electro-chemical conversions. $\endgroup$
    – Transistor
    Commented May 13, 2022 at 7:36
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    $\begingroup$ @DKNguyen fluorescent and neon tubes are gas discharge lights, and they don't get hot at all. Fluorescent gets warm, but mainly from inefficiency in the phosphors. $\endgroup$ Commented May 14, 2022 at 0:38


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