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Spring constant and energy

  1. Jan 11, 2017 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data

    1.JPG
    2. Relevant equations


    3. The attempt at a solution

    EPE is (0.5)kx^2

    Let Y have spring constant of K then X has spring constant of 2K

    So EPE of Y is (0.50kx^2 which is E

    So EPE of X must be (0.5)2kx^2 which is kx^2 which is 2E? But correct answer is E/2??
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Jan 11, 2017 #2

    gneill

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    Staff: Mentor

    It looks like you've assumed that x is the same for both springs. Is that going to be the case?
     
  4. Jan 11, 2017 #3
    Ah, in that case if X has a stiffer spring, 2K, then its extension (x) will only be half, so we'd have (0.5)(2K)(0.5x) so the energy stored is the same for both??
     
  5. Jan 11, 2017 #4

    gneill

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    Staff: Mentor

    Check the expression you've just used for the energy. Did you forget something?
     
  6. Jan 11, 2017 #5
    Argh such a silly mistake! Thanks for your help : )
     
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