Physics 201- Introduction to Electricity & Magnetism
September 23- Electrostatic Potentials

Review of potential energy and work

Consider an object that travels from point A to point B while two constant forces F1 and F2 are exerted on the object.  Note that the forces have unequal magnitude and F1 is directed toward point A and F2 toward point B.

a) Is the total work done on the object by F1 positive, negative or zero?
b) Is the total work done on the object by F2 positive, negative or zero?
c) Is the net work done on the object positive, negative or zero?

Is the speed of the object at point B greater than, less than or equal to the speed of the object at point A?  Explain.

What is a "conservative force"?

What are some examples of both conservative and non-conservative forces?

If we have a conservative force, how can we related the work done by that force to the potential energy stored in the system?

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 Jeff Phillips phillips@lmu.edu Loyola Marymount University Fall 2002