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Physics

Module 3: Waves and Thermodynamics

The Special Case of Conservation of Mechanical Energy (Work Done and Gravitational Potential Energy)

What is the special case of conservation of mechanical energy?

In this post, we apply the special case of conservation of mechanical energy to the quantitative analysis of motion, as a part of the Prelim Physics course under the module Dynamics and sub-part Forces, Acceleration and Energy. We take a look at the work done and the change in the kinetic energy of an object undergoing accelerated rectilinear motion in one dimension W = F||s = Fscos(\theta) , and the changes in gravitational potential energy of an object in a uniform field \Delta U = mg \Delta h . Mechanical energy, E_{M} , is the sum of the potential energy and kinetic energy in a system E_{M} = GPE + KE

 

The following three videos will guide you through work and energy, including gravitational potential energy and the related equations and theory-based around the special case of conservation of mechanical energy.

 

Part 1: Crash Course: Work, Energy and Power

 

Part 2: Gravitational potential energy examples

 

Part 3: Introduction equations and examples to gravitational potential energy