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potential energy

When an object is being acted upon by a force like the electric or gravitational force, then it can be assigned an energy that depends only upon its location relative to the source of the force. This energy is called the potential energy - "potential" as it can easily be transformed into kinetic energy, energy associated with the object's motion: As the object yields to the pull or push of the force, its potential energy decreases while the energy associated with its motion increases.