1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data Say you have a binary star sytem. Both stars have mass M and semimajor axis a. The orbits are extremely eccentric (e is approximately 1). How would you describe the energy of the system? 2. Relevant equations SEE BELOW 3. The attempt at a solution Basically I'm very unconfident about my answer and feel like I'm blanking on basic physics. I imagined the stars both at apocenter at some initial time. With such an eccentric orbit the velocities would be nearly zero here, so the total energy of each stars orbit would be quite nearly all potential energy. -Gmm/r where r is distance to the barycenter or 2a so the potential energy of each star is -(Gm^2)/2a. So the sum of the PE's would be 2 times this amount and therefore the total energy of the orbit is -(Gm^2)/a Is this valid?