If you're seeing this message, it means we're having trouble loading external resources on our website.

If you're behind a web filter, please make sure that the domains *.kastatic.org and *.kasandbox.org are unblocked.

## AP®︎/College Physics 1

### Course: AP®︎/College Physics 1>Unit 5

Lesson 2: Energy of simple harmonic oscillator

# Energy of a simple harmonic oscillator

AP.PHYS: CON‑5.B (EU), CON‑5.B.3 (EK), CON‑5.B.3.2 (LO), CON‑5.B.3.3 (LO), CON‑5.B.4 (EK), CON‑5.B.4.1 (LO)

## Problem

A student sets up the harmonic oscillator in which a mass is attached to a spring with constant k that is attached to a wall. The student pulls the mass a distance x from equilibrium and releases it from rest. The student then measures the maximum speed of the mass during its oscillation and calculates the total mechanical energy, start text, E, end text, start subscript, start text, t, o, t, a, l, end text, end subscript, of the system. Assume no energy is lost to friction.
If the student changes the initial displacement from x to start fraction, x, divided by, 2, end fraction, in terms of start text, E, end text, start subscript, start text, t, o, t, a, l, end text, end subscript, what will the new mechanical energy of the system be?