# Energy=work, but how does work = electric potential energy?

## Main Question or Discussion Point

yes, energy = work, but how does electric potential energy (U) = Vq (electric potential and charge) relate to work (W=Fd), specifically. An example would be most helpful!

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ZapperZ
Staff Emeritus
Back up a bit. Do you also have a problem relating work to gravitatonal potential energy, which I presume, you've encountered already?

Zz.

So gravitation potential energy is the same as electrical potential except it's a different source (the field versus the mass of the earth)? I think i understand this, I guess a better question would be how to relate the SI units of work and energy. I know that they are related, but how (Volts * q) which equals electric potential energy relates to Work (Fd) is beyond me. any ideas?

Last edited:
geez i think i figured it out. the SI unit of energy is Joules. Joules also equals newton*meters. Work is force*distance, which is also Newton*meters, so all that makes sense. Then electric potential energy (U)=V*q or electric potential and charge. (sorry I got it wrong above). well, volts also equals J/C. so when you cancel the coulombs with the charge in the equation you're left with just Joules! that's how regular old energy relates to electric potential energy, then how to relate energy to work. well, work is Fd and energy is newton meters (or force* distance). so that's it right? this may have been stupid and really pointless, sorry for that...but I did learn here (if all this is even right?)! haha thanks for your help connecting ideas!

ZapperZ
Staff Emeritus