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Member advised to use the homework template for posts in the homework sections of PF.

**A planar object comprises of two masses joined by a linear spring with relaxed length p. The horizontal and the vertical displacements of the two masses are measured relative to a fixed point of reference as shown in the figure. What would be the potential energy of the spring?**

My initial guess for this problem are that the spring will have a horizontal PE=(1/2)*k*(z-x)^2 and a vertical PE=(1/2)*k*(w-y)^2.

But something tells me that there might be the possibility of the PE=(1/2)*k*(sqrt(z^2+w^2)-p)^2-(1/2)*k*(sqrt(x^2+y^2)-p)^2.

Please help