- It is the energy of an object due to the virtue of its position, configuration and orientation.
- It is denoted by 'u'.
- There are various types of potential energy.
Examples of Potential Energy:
- Water stored in dams contain potential energy.
- Elongated or compressed spring also has potential energy.
- Objects placed at a height contain potential energy.
- Two charged particle separated at a distance contain potential energy.
Gravitational Potential Energy
It is the energy of an object due to its position. Its value is taken as 0 on the surface of the earth. It is given by a formula:
u = mgh
u is the potential energy.
m is the mass of the object.
g is the acceleration due to gravity.
h is the height of an object.
work = force * displacement
w = mg * h
(as work = potential energy)
Gravitation al Potential Energy = mgh
Factors affecting gravitational potential energy:
- It is directly proportional to the mass of the object.
- It is directly proportional to the height of the object.
- It is directly proportional to the acceleration due to gravity.
Elastic Potential Energy
It is the energy related to spring or elastic chord.
Elastic potential energy is given by a formula:
u = 1/2 k x^2