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Q. 7

Expert-verified
Found in: Page 353

### Physics for Scientists and Engineers: A Strategic Approach with Modern Physics

Book edition 4th
Author(s) Randall D. Knight
Pages 1240 pages
ISBN 9780133942651

# Why is the gravitational potential energy of two masses negative? Note that saying “because that’s what the equation gives” is not an explanation.

If two masses are placed at infinite distance their Gravitational potential energy is Zero.

This means the negative potential energy has less potential energy than their potential energy at infinite separation.

See the step by step solution

## Step1: Given Information

Potential energy of two masses negative

## Step2 Explanation

If two masses are placed at infinite distance their Gravitational potential energy is Zero.

This means the negative potential energy has less potential energy than their potential energy at infinite separation.

The gravitational potential energy is given by

When r approaches to infinity the value of potential energy approach to 0.

This means two masses infinitely far apart will have no tendency, or potential to move together.