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Homework Help: Scalar potential in 3D

  1. Mar 23, 2009 #1
    I have a conservative force given in three vector components as normal. Each component is a function of x, y and z.

    I need to find the scalar potential. I am a bit confused about this because of the force's complexity.

    I know the V = (integral) F.dx, for a 1 dimensional problem, but i amn't sure for this one.

    So where do I start?

    As always, thanks for the great help guys!
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 23, 2009 #2
    First, you have to show your attempt at the solution before help can be given. However, I will say that

    [tex] \vec F = F_{x}\hat x + F_{y} \hat y + F_{z} \hat z = -\vec \nabla \phi [/tex]

    [tex] F_{x}=-\frac{\partial \phi}{\partial x} , F_{y}=-\frac{\partial \phi}{\partial y} ,F_{z}=-\frac{\partial \phi}{\partial z} [/tex]
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