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Elastic Potential Energy of a system with 2 springs and 1 mass on an incline

  1. Jul 19, 2011 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data

    IV. The block in the figure has a mass of 0.150 kg, and the surface it is on is frictionless.
    The force constant of the upper spring is 250 N/m, and the force constant of the lower
    spring is 450 N/m. The upper spring is initially compressed by a distance of 0.10
    meters. The distance between the two elevations is h = 0:50 meters

    2. Relevant equations

    (a) Clearly dene the origin for the coordinate system you will use on the diagram.
    Before the block is released (from rest) what is the potential energy of the system?
    (b) What is the speed of the block when it reaches point "A" on the diagram ?
    (c) What will the maximum compression of the lower spring be when the block hits
    it?

    3. The attempt at a solution

    I started on part a) I know U1=(1/2)Kx^2 and U2=(1/2)Kx^2 I was not sure how to go about finding the Total potential energy of the system. I assume the x value of the lower spring is 0, but it says it has a force constant of 450 n/m. So (450 n/m)(0) = 0 for the lower spring so the total elastic potential energy for the system is just the potential energy of the upper spring??
     
    Last edited: Jul 19, 2011
  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 20, 2011 #2
    cant understand completely
    do you have a diagram?
     
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