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Spring constant problem

  1. Jun 4, 2007 #1
    This is my first time here! Thanks for the help in advance.

    The staples inside a stapler are kept in place
    by a spring with a relaxed length of 0.115 m.
    If the spring constant is 45.0 N/m, how
    much elastic potential energy is stored in the
    spring when its length is 0.145 m? Answer in
    units of J.

    I know I have to use F=kx (maybe), but what's confusing me is the potential energy part. How do I fit that into finding the answer?
  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 4, 2007 #2
    elastic P.E = work done to compress =integral of [(F)x(dx)] between the limits 0.145 and 0.115
  4. Jun 4, 2007 #3


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    If you haven't done calculus, the result Amith2006 is pointing you toward can be written PE=(1/2)*k*x^2, where x is the displacement from equilibrium.
  5. Jun 4, 2007 #4
    Yeah, I've done calculus, but thank you both!
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