# Potential Energy of a Spring?

1. Sep 28, 2005

### erik-the-red

A force of $$800 m$$ stretches a certain spring a distance of $$0.200 m$$.

1. What is the potential energy of the spring when it is stretched a distance of $$0.200 m$$?

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

2. What is its potential energy when it is compressed a distance of $$5.00 cm$$?

Why is the answer 5.00 J?

2. Sep 28, 2005

### 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.)

3. Oct 1, 2005

### erik-the-red

Thank you so much!