I need to know if it is potential or kinetic

timer Asked: May 15th, 2015
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Question Description

When forming bonds between atoms, which type of energy increases, potential or kinetic?

Tutor Answer

Doctor T
School: Rice University

Kinetic energy is in anything that is moving. When two atoms are forming bonds they are either sharing electrons or trading electrons. That being said I would imagine that kinetic increases. Only it depends on the context of the problem. Potential energy is the ability to do work which has a lot to do with mass and weight. And although atoms are small, any increase in mass, and hence increase in weight, increases an objects potential energy as well..

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Thanks, good work

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