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Harmonic oscillator

  1. May 3, 2006 #1
    Can someone check my work please I'm pretty sure I don't have the right answer but I can't figure out what I have wrong.

    The question is:
    A simple harmonic oscillator has total energy E=1/2kA^2
    where A is the amplitude of oscillation.
    For what value of the displacement does the kinetic energy equal the potential energy?

    So I figure that if KE is equal to PE, then PE=1/2E


    1/2kx^2 =1/2(1/2kA^2)
    kx^2 = 1/2kA^2
    x = 1/4A

    Any ideas?
  2. jcsd
  3. May 3, 2006 #2

    Doc Al

    User Avatar

    Staff: Mentor


    Not good. :grumpy:
  4. May 3, 2006 #3
    I think I see my error.

    Is the answer x = 0.71A ?
  5. May 3, 2006 #4

    Doc Al

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    Staff: Mentor

    Yep. [itex]x = (1/\sqrt{2}) A[/itex]
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