15 Example Of Gravitational Energy To Mechanical Energy: Detailed Explanations

In this article, we will discuss the various example of gravitational energy to mechanical energy with detailed facts.

The gravitational energy is the potential energy stored by the object as the height of the object from the ground is increased. Here, we shall discuss how the gravitational energy is converted into mechanical energy with the following list of examples:-

Water Turbines

The sea and river water have immense potential energy stored, which is derived to generate the electricity by using the water turbines.

example of gravitational energy to mechanical energy
Turbine Wheel;
Image Credit: Pixabay

Depending upon the flow of water the turbines catch up the speed and rotate. The mechanical energy is created due to the rotational motion of the turbine, which is converted into electrical energy further by the generator.


The dams store the water in between the rigid walls raised at height. As the height is gained by the volume of water stored in the dam, the gravitational potential energy of the water also escalates with height.

River Dam;
Image Credit: Pixabay

Upon realizing the water, the potential energy is transferred into the kinetic energy and water flows down. The combination of kinetic and potential energy is equivalent to mechanical energy. This kinetic energy of the water can be traced to electrical energy by converting it into mechanical energy using turbines.

Sedimentary Deposition

The gravitational energy associated with the water is converted into kinetic energy while the water flows.

Sedimentary Deposition of Rocks; Image Credit: Pixabay

The flow of water has enough potential energy that it carries the sediments along which is then deposited in the sedimentary basin where the water makes its fall. These sediments deposit one above the other and form sedimentary rocks.

Read more on Is Gravitational Force Positive Or Negative: What, When, How, Several Facts.

Physical Activities

The animal possesses gravitational energy which is converted into mechanical energy while doing physical activities like climbing, jumping, walking, cycling, etc.

Bouncing Ball

Every object exerts gravitational energy on the Earth and the gravitational potential energy associated with the object rises as the height of the object from above the ground increases.

Basketball; Image Credit: Pixabay

As the ball is raised from the ground it gains some gravitational energy which is turned into mechanical energy as the ball starts bouncing upon releasing it from height.


Gravitron is a machine in an amusement park that works on the centrifugal force and zero gravity concepts.

The gravitron is accelerated at a high speed that the person standing across the wall of the gravitron does not fall down even on removing the floor beneath. The acceleration of the gravitron increases the centrifugal force exerted on the body and the person does not fall.

Read more on 19+ Example Of Mechanical To Kinetic Energy: Detailed Explanations.

Roller Sliding down the Slope

Any circular object kept on the top of the slope will roll down converting the gravitational energy to mechanical energy.

Skiing; Image Credit: Pixabay

Read more on Is Gravitational Force A Central Force: Why, How And Detailed Insights.

Ferris Wheel

A lot of force is required to lift the weight upward, then the gravitational energy pulls the weight accelerating down, hence the gravitational energy is converted into the mechanical energy rotating the wheel.

Ferries wheel;
Image Credit: Pixabay

You must have noticed that you feel pressure on your body while riding up the height sitting in a ferries wheel about you experience a free fall while riding down from the height. This is because the bodyweight is acting downward while the acceleration is upward which is opposed by the bodyweight. While riding down towards the ground the acceleration and the weight both are downward hence you experience a free fall.


A girl sitting on the swings has the gravitational potential energy, as the mass rises above a certain height.

Swing; Image Credit: Pixabay

This potential energy is converted into kinetic energy and mechanical energy as she swings.

Driving Down the Hill

At the steeper slope, the car gains acceleration while driving down the slope. The gravitational energy gained by the car is converted into kinetic and mechanical energy thus gaining speed.

Read more on 14+ Uses Of Mechanical Energy: Detailed Explanations.


Slides are frictionless surfaces or have very little friction due to which the body can easily slide down.

Slides; Image Credit: Pixabay

As the person is standing above the height, he gains the additional potential energy in the form of gravitational energy which is converted into mechanical energy while sliding down.


The bowling ball initially possesses gravitational potential energy when it is in our hand before the throw.

Bowling; Image Credit: Pixabay

Upon hitting the surface the gravitational energy is converted into kinetic energy, due to which the ball rolls towards the target thus dramatically expending the mechanical energy.

River Flow

The river has stored the gravitational energy which is converted into mechanical and kinetic energy while flowing from one place to another.

River Flow; Image Credit: Pixabay

The flow of water also carries the sediments and debris along with it.

Read more on 17+ Example Of Mechanical To Radiant Energy: Detailed Explanations.

Weighing Scale

Weighing scales are used to measure the weight of the objects by keeping the object in one container and the required weight in the other container.

Weighing Machine;
Image Credit: Pixabay

The gravitational energy gained by the weight is converted to the mechanical energy on keeping the weight on the scale that tangles the weighing machine.

Cock Pendulum

This pendulum is used to detect seismic activities. As the waves strike on the pendulum it starts rotating, and along with it, the string attached to the pendulum bob, and the clock structure starts moving, which results in the action of the cocks as if they are collecting grains in their beaks.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is gravitational energy?

It is an energy gain by the system due to gravity.

Any object raised above the height gains some potential energy called gravitational energy which is equal to U=mgh. The greater the height of the object above the ground more will be its gravitational potential energy.

What is mechanical energy?

Mechanical energy is the energy generated while doing some work.

It is a combination of potential and the kinetic energy associated with the body to do the work.


Hi, I’m Akshita Mapari. I have done M.Sc. in Physics. I have worked on projects like Numerical modeling of winds and waves during cyclone, Physics of toys and mechanized thrill machines in amusement park based on Classical Mechanics. I have pursued a course on Arduino and have accomplished some mini projects on Arduino UNO. I always like to explore new zones in the field of science. I personally believe that learning is more enthusiastic when learnt with creativity. Apart from this, I like to read, travel, strumming on guitar, identifying rocks and strata, photography and playing chess. Connect me on LinkedIn - linkedin.com/in/akshita-mapari-b38a68122

Recent Posts