Potential energy

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Content – Forms of energy


Potential energy is the energy of an object or a system with respect to the position it has within a force field or the condition or configuration of the parts or compounds of the object.

This includes: Gravitational (caused by gravity) potential energy of an object that depends on its vertical position and mass, the elastic potential energy of an extended or compressed spring, and the electric potential energy of a charge in an electric field.

The potential energy of an object equals the work necessary to bring the object into the actual state or the amount of work the object can perform if released from it`s state.

Formula for gravitational potential energy.

E_{pg}= mgh

m = Mass
g = Gravitational acceleration (9,8 m/s2 close to earth)
h = Height above the reference point

Formula for elastic potential energy for a linear spring.


k = Spring constant
x = Amount of stretch or compression