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Potential Energy of a Spring?

  1. Sep 28, 2005 #1
    A force of [tex]800 m[/tex] stretches a certain spring a distance of [tex]0.200 m[/tex].

    1. What is the potential energy of the spring when it is stretched a distance of [tex]0.200 m[/tex]?

    Why is the answer 80.0 J instead of 160. J?

    2. What is its potential energy when it is compressed a distance of [tex]5.00 cm[/tex]?

    Why is the answer 5.00 J?
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 28, 2005 #2

    Doc Al

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    Staff: Mentor

    How does the potential energy of a spring depend on how much it is stretched or compressed?

    Note that it's not saying that a force of 800 N was uniformly applied over a distance of 0.200 m; it says that a force of 800 N will stretch the spring 0.200 m. (Use that fact to find the spring constant.)
  4. Oct 1, 2005 #3
    Thank you so much!
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