(adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({}); [SOLVED] Interpreting a Potential Energy Graph

1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data

A particle moving in one dimension is subject to the potential energy curve shown in

the plot. Which of the following statements is true?

[Diagram attached]

A) At point xa, the force on the particle is in the negative x direction.

B) If the particle has total energy of 3 Joules at point xc and its velocity is in the positive

x direction, it will eventually reach point xa.

C) If the particle has kinetic energy of 3 Joules at point xc it can reach point xb.

D) If the total energy of the particle at point xb is 3 Joules it can reach point xc.

E) If the particle is released from rest at xc, it will travel in the positive x direction.

2. Relevant equations

F = -dU/dx

3. The attempt at a solution

I know A is false because F is the negative derivative of U. The slope at point Xa is negative, so when I take the negative of that, F ends up being positive.

Other than that, the wording confuses me. I'm sure that it's a whole lot simpler than I'm making it out to be.

I'm not just looking for the answer (I know it's C), I'd like to understand why the other choices are false.

**Physics Forums | Science Articles, Homework Help, Discussion**

The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

# Homework Help: Interpreting a Potential Energy Graph

**Physics Forums | Science Articles, Homework Help, Discussion**