Using Energy

  • Philip Dyke
  • Roger Whitworth
Part of the Macmillan Mathematical Guides book series (MG)


Energy is the capability of a body to do work. It can take many forms: heat, light, sound, electricity, magnetism, nuclear and so on. However, our concern is with mechanical energy. Mechanical energy is of two types: kinetic energy and potential energy. Kinetic energy is the energy of a body by virtue of its motion. Potential energy is the energy of a body by virtue of its position. A body is held so that it is stationary and then released; if it moves then it possesses potential energy. Examples include a stone dropped out of a window or the release of a stretched catapult. In order to develop results systematically from our knowledge of forces, we shall first define work.


Potential Energy Maximum Speed Mechanical Energy Frictional Resistance Line Integral 
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Copyright information

© Philip Dyke & Roger Whitworth 1992

Authors and Affiliations

  • Philip Dyke
    • 1
  • Roger Whitworth
    • 2
  1. 1.Polytechnic South WestUK
  2. 2.Droitwich High SchoolUK

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