Difference Between Kinetic Energy and Potential Energy (With Table)

Everything around us is energy. Energy is functionary and the basis of functioning as well. Energy lays the capabilities of a thing, object or person to carry out work. There are various forms of energy. Two such energies are Kinetic energy and potential energy. 

Kinetic energy is determined by calculating the speed velocity or mass of an object while it is moving. Potential energy is calculated by using the mass, gravity, height, and distance of an object.

Kinetic Energy vs Potential Energy

The main difference between kinetic energy and potential energy is that energies can be transferred between objects with regards to kinetic energy and the same cannot occur for potential energy.

Supporting with explanation, the key difference between kinetic energy is that it considers the energy of objects in motion and potential energy is that energy that an object has due to its positioning relative to other objects in the surroundings.


Comparison Table Between Kinetic Energy and Potential Energy (in Tabular Form)

Parameters of comparison

Kinetic Energy

Potential Energy


The energy of an object in motion

Stored energy in an object


Related to other objects

Not related to the environment





Velocity( speed) and Mass

Mass and Height/distance


What is Kinetic Energy?

Any object that is in motion irrespective if it is in motion horizontally or vertically does possess kinetic energy. Kinetic energy comes in forms such as translation energy, rotation energy, and vibration energy.

Kinetic energy is increased when an object is in motion and is maintained until the moving object changes its speed.

Also, kinetic energy is dependent on the other objects in close proximity as well. Kinetic energy is of translational, rotational, vibration, and translation kinetic energy.

For example, a moving car, dropping off a
pen from the table, swinging pendulum, etc

What is Potential Energy?

Potential energy is found in every object that has
mass, gravity, velocity within the dimension of a field. Potential energy is
that energy which is a stored form of energy found in an object when it is at
rest. Potential energy has three main characteristics.

 One is the shape of the object at rest; the second is the position of that object and third is the potential the object has to transform into kinetic energy.

Potential energy facts can be of elastic, nuclear, gravitational and chemical energy.

For Example, A water bottle of a table or a ball on a table are forms of potential energy. If the ball or water bottle falls from the table the potential energy transforms into Kinetic energy.



The universe is a field and filled with energy. Physics and the universe are the essences for defining existence. Energy cannot be created nor destroyed and can only change its form. It only changes its form.

Kinetic energy can be converted into potential energy and vice versa. Kinetic energy is energy possesses when an object is in motion while potential energy is the energy that is created when the object is in a position of rest.

Both the energies are important components to drive
the force of understanding the mechanism of psychics’.  Rest, space, motion, travel, distance,
height, gravity are crucial for understanding how the energy and flow of energy



  1. https://www.sciencelearn.org.nz/resources/1572-what-is-energy
  2. https://www.eartheclipse.com/energy/kinetic-and-potential-energy.html
  3. https://www.physics-and-radio-electronics.com/physics/energy/kinetic-energy/types-of-kinetic-energy.html