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Homework Help: Work done by spring with weight to the spring

  1. Nov 19, 2009 #1
    Hey, I just have a quick question. I understand that the work done by a spring is considered as the following; Ws=-.5kx^2. What if the spring has weight to it? Would the work done by the spring be Ws=-(.5kx^2)-m(spring)g? Does the weight get added or is it not even considered in that equation?


    *i'm saying the weight is the spring, I understand where the weight the spring is holding is associated but what about the mass of the spring if there is one
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 19, 2009 #2


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    In the absence of more data, about all you can say about the work done by a spring that is not massless is, since both spring and gravity forces are conservative,
    [tex]W_s + W_g = - (\Delta U_s + \Delta U_g) [/tex]. If the spring was horizontal, its mass wouldn't matter, but the case would be different if the spring was vertically mounted.
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