Change in gravitational energy

In summary, gravitational potential energy is the energy an object possesses due to its position in a gravitational field. The change in height directly affects the change in gravitational potential energy, with an increase in height resulting in an increase in potential energy and a decrease in height resulting in a decrease in potential energy. The formula for calculating change in gravitational potential energy is ΔPE = mgh, where ΔPE is the change in potential energy, m is the mass of the object, g is the acceleration due to gravity, and h is the change in height. The mass of an object does not directly affect its gravitational potential energy, but a heavier object will have a greater potential energy at a certain height due to its greater gravitational pull. Gravitational potential energy
  • #1
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here's a question.

a body of mass m at a surface of the Earth is brought to a point a distance 2R ( R = radius of the Earth ) from the centre of the Earth.

what is the change in gravitational energy of the body. will the gravitational energy of the body increased or decreased?
 
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  • #2
What do you mean by the "gravitational energy" of a body? The gravitational potential energy?

The potential energy changes, in moving from R to 2R, by the work done to move the mass: the integral (from R to 2R) of -GmM/r2 dr= (GmM)/R.
 

1. What is gravitational potential energy?

Gravitational potential energy is the energy an object has due to its position in a gravitational field. It is the energy that can be converted into other forms of energy when the object falls or moves due to the force of gravity.

2. How does the change in height affect gravitational potential energy?

The change in height directly affects the change in gravitational potential energy. As an object moves higher in a gravitational field, its potential energy increases. Similarly, as it moves lower, its potential energy decreases.

3. What is the formula for calculating change in gravitational potential energy?

The formula for calculating change in gravitational potential energy is ΔPE = mgh, where ΔPE is the change in potential energy, m is the mass of the object, g is the acceleration due to gravity, and h is the change in height.

4. How does the mass of an object affect its gravitational potential energy?

The mass of an object does not directly affect its gravitational potential energy. However, a heavier object will have a greater potential energy at a certain height compared to a lighter object due to its greater gravitational pull.

5. Can gravitational potential energy be negative?

Yes, gravitational potential energy can be negative. This occurs when an object is in a position where it has less potential energy than its reference point, such as when it is below ground level. However, the total energy of the system (including kinetic energy) will always be positive.

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