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Difference Between Work and Energy

  • Difficulty Level : Expert
  • Last Updated : 04 Mar, 2021

Work: Work may be a sort of energy transfer. You are doing work on rock bottom whenever you walk and thus the bottom does work on you whenever you beat it. Moreover, it has to cover a distance during a selected direction with the help of the applied force for it to be considered work. It means the concept of labor hinges thereon on displacement. For work to occur there must be a force and movement from one place to another. The word “work” was first given by Gaspard Coriolis. He’s a French mathematician. He coined this word in 1826. The SI unit of physics is joules.

Formula of work 

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\begin{matrix} W = \bigtriangleup KE \\ KE = \frac{1}{2} mv^{2} \\ W = F \bigtriangleup r \cos \Theta \end{matrix}

Energy: Energy can be defined as the measurement of the ability of something to do work. It is not a material substance. Energy can be stored and measured in many forms. It is also referred to as the force which works at a certain distance. Energy deals with the capacity of an object to do the work. The SI unit of physics is joules.

Formula of Energy 

E_{k} = \frac{1}{2} mv^{2}
Ek = kinetic energy of object

m = mass of object

v = speed of object


Below is a table of differences between Work and Energy:

S.No                              WORK                                   ENERGY                
1Work is the ability to supply force and a change in distance to an object.Energy is the ability to supply or create work.
2There is a parallel relationship between the force components and displacementEnergy is that the results of the work performed
3The action did on the thing causing some displacementIt is described as a property of a system
4Scalar units.Scalar units.
5Work = force X distanceThere are various equations depending upon the kinds of energy
6If the applied force is within the same direction of the displacement than work is positiveThe is not any direction component here because it may be a scalar quantity
7It the applied force is within the other way of the displacement that employment is negativeThen also there’ll be no direction component here because it may be a scalar quantity
8Work was only utilized in 1826Energy was coined in 4 BC

Sample Problems on Work and Energy

Question 1. If a force of 30 N in lifting a load of 2kg to a height of 10m (g = 10ms-2), then calculate the amount of work done in this process?


Given, Force in lifting mg = 30 N ; height = 10 m

Work done W = ?

W = F.S (or) mgh

= 30×10

W = 300 J  

Hence the answer is 300J

Question 2. Compute the work done if 10 N of force acts on the body showing the displacement of 2 m?


Given, F (Force) = 10 N,

d (Displacement) = 2 m,

W (Work done) = F × d

= 10 N × 2 m

= 20 Nm.

Question 3. A body of mass 10kg at rest is subjected to a force of 16N. Find the K.E. at the top of 10 s.


Mass m = 10 kg

Force F = 16 N

time t = 10 s

a = F/m:fl:1.6ms”


we know v = u + at

Kinetic energy KE : 1/2mv^2

0.5 x 10 x 16 x 16


Question 4: A body of mass 5kg is thrown up vertically with a K.E. of 1000 J. If acceleration thanks to gravity is 10ms-2, find the peak at which the K.E. becomes half the first value.


Mass m = 5kg

K.E E = 1000J

g = 10m s-2

At a height ‘h’, mgh = E/2

5x10xh = 1000/2

h = 500/50

h = 10m

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