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  • Derive the equation for rotational work.
  • Calculate rotational kinetic energy.
  • Demonstrate the Law of Conservation of Energy.

In this module, we will learn about work and energy associated with rotational motion. [link] shows a worker using an electric grindstone propelled by a motor. Sparks are flying, and noise and vibration are created as layers of steel are pared from the pole. The stone continues to turn even after the motor is turned off, but it is eventually brought to a stop by friction. Clearly, the motor had to work to get the stone spinning. This work went into heat, light, sound, vibration, and considerable rotational kinetic energy    .

The figure shows a mechanic cutting metal with a metal grinder. The sparks are emerging from the point of contact and jumping off tangentially from the cutter.
The motor works in spinning the grindstone, giving it rotational kinetic energy. That energy is then converted to heat, light, sound, and vibration. (credit: U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Zachary David Bell)

Work must be done to rotate objects such as grindstones or merry-go-rounds. Work was defined in Uniform Circular Motion and Gravitation for translational motion, and we can build on that knowledge when considering work done in rotational motion. The simplest rotational situation is one in which the net force is exerted perpendicular to the radius of a disk (as shown in [link] ) and remains perpendicular as the disk starts to rotate. The force is parallel to the displacement, and so the net work done is the product of the force times the arc length traveled:

net W = ( net F ) Δ s . size 12{"net "W= left ("net "F right ) cdot Δs} {}

To get torque and other rotational quantities into the equation, we multiply and divide the right-hand side of the equation by r size 12{r} {} , and gather terms:

net W = ( r net F ) Δ s r . size 12{"net"W= left (r" net "F right ) { {Δs} over {r} } } {}

We recognize that r net F = net τ size 12{r" net "F=" net "τ} {} and Δ s / r = θ size 12{Δs/r=θ} {} , so that

net W = net τ θ . size 12{"net "W= left ("net "τ right )θ} {}

This equation is the expression for rotational work. It is very similar to the familiar definition of translational work as force multiplied by distance. Here, torque is analogous to force, and angle is analogous to distance. The equation net W = net τ θ size 12{"net "W= left ("net "τ right )θ} {} is valid in general, even though it was derived for a special case.

To get an expression for rotational kinetic energy, we must again perform some algebraic manipulations. The first step is to note that net τ = size 12{"net "W=Iα} {} , so that

net W = I αθ . size 12{"net "W=I ital "αθ"} {}
The figure shows a circular disc of radius r. A net force F is applied perpendicular to the radius, rotating the disc in an anti-clockwise direction and producing a displacement equal to delta S, in a direction parallel to the direction of the force applied. The angle covered is theta.
The net force on this disk is kept perpendicular to its radius as the force causes the disk to rotate. The net work done is thus net F Δ s size 12{ left ("net "F right ) cdot Δs} {} . The net work goes into rotational kinetic energy.

Making connections

Work and energy in rotational motion are completely analogous to work and energy in translational motion, first presented in Uniform Circular Motion and Gravitation .

Now, we solve one of the rotational kinematics equations for αθ size 12{ ital "αθ"} {} . We start with the equation

ω 2 = ω 0 2 + 2 αθ . size 12{ω rSup { size 8{2} } =ω rSub { size 8{0} rSup { size 8{2} } } +2 ital "αθ"} {}

Next, we solve for αθ size 12{ ital "αθ"} {} :

αθ = ω 2 ω 0 2 2 . size 12{ ital "αθ"= { {ω rSup { size 8{2} } - ω rSub { size 8{0} rSup { size 8{2} } } } over {2} } } {}

Substituting this into the equation for net W size 12{W} {} and gathering terms yields

net W = 1 2 2 1 2 I ω 0 2 . size 12{"net "W= { {1} over {2} } Iω rSup { size 8{2} } - { {1} over {2} } Iω rSub { size 8{0} rSup { size 8{2} } } } {}

This equation is the work-energy theorem    for rotational motion only. As you may recall, net work changes the kinetic energy of a system. Through an analogy with translational motion, we define the term 1 2 2 size 12{ left ( { {1} over {2} } right )Iω rSup { size 8{2} } } {} to be rotational kinetic energy     KE rot size 12{ ital "KE" rSub { size 8{ ital "rot"} } } {} for an object with a moment of inertia I size 12{I} {} and an angular velocity ω size 12{ω} {} :

Questions & Answers

What interference
Moyinoluwa Reply
What is a polarized light called?
Moyinoluwa
what is a half life
Mama Reply
the time taken for a radioactive element to decay by half of its original mass
ken
what is radioactive element
mohammed
Half of the total time required by a radioactive nuclear atom to totally disintegrate
Justice
radioactive elements are those with unstable nuclei(ie have protons more than neutrons, or neutrons more than protons
Justice
in other words, the radioactive atom or elements have unequal number of protons to neutrons.
Justice
state the laws of refraction
Fabian
state laws of reflection
Fabian
Why does a bicycle rider bends towards the corner when is turning?
Mac
When do we say that the stone thrown vertically up wards accelerate negatively?
Mac
Give two importance of insulator placed between plates of a capacitor.
Mac
Macho had a shoe with a big sole moving in mudy Road, shanitah had a shoe with a small sole. Give reasons for those two cases.
Mac
when was the name taken from
Biola Reply
retardation of a car
Biola
when was the name retardation taken
Biola
did you mean a motion with velocity decreases uniformly by the time? then, the vector acceleration is opposite direction with vector velocity
Sphere
Atomic transmutation
Basirat Reply
An atom is the smallest indivisible particular of an element
mosco Reply
what is an atomic
Awene Reply
reference on periodic table
Titus Reply
what Is resonance?
Mozam Reply
phenomena of increasing amplitude from normal position of a substance due to some external source.
akif
What is a black body
Amey Reply
Black body is the ideal body can absorb and emit all radiation
Ahmed
the emissivity of black body is 1. it is a perfect absorber and emitter of heat.
Busayo
Why is null measurement accurate than standard voltmeter
Neemat Reply
that is photoelectric effect ?
Sabir Reply
It is the emission of electrons when light hits a material
Anita
Yeah
yusuf
is not just a material
Neemat
it is the surface of a metal
Neemat
what is the formula for time of flight ,maxjmum height and range
agangan Reply
what is an atom
Awene
how does a lightning rod protect a building from damage due to lightning ?
Faith Reply
due to its surface lustre but due to some factors it can corrode but not easily as it lightning surface
babels
pls what is mirage
babels
light rays bend to produce a displaced image of distant objects; it's an natural & optical phenomenon......
Deepika
what is the dimensional formula for torque
Otto Reply
L2MT-2
Jolly
same units of energy
Baber
what is same units of energy?
Baber
Nm
Sphere
Ws
Sphere
CV
Sphere
M L2 T -2
Dokku
it is like checking the dimension of force. which is ML2T-2
Busayo
ML2T-2
Joshua
M L2 T-2
Samuel
what is the significance of moment of inertia?
study
an object of mass 200g moves along a circular path of radius 0.5cm with a speed of 2m/s. calculate the angular velocity ii period iii frequency of the object
Faith Reply
w = 2/(0.005) period = PIE(0.005) f = 1/(PIE(0.005)) assuming uniform motion idk..
Georgie
w=2/(0.005)×100
isaac
supposed the speed on the path is constant angular velocity w (rad/s) = v (m/s) : R (m) period T (s) = 2*Pi * R : v frequency f ( Hz) = 1: T
Sphere
a=w.w.r=mv.v/r,w=mv/r=0.2×2/0.005=80rads-s
Mac
Practice Key Terms 2

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Source:  OpenStax, College physics. OpenStax CNX. Jul 27, 2015 Download for free at http://legacy.cnx.org/content/col11406/1.9
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