# Formula: Newton's Law of Gravity (Potential Energy of a Mass) Gravitational energy    Distance    Mass

## Gravitational energy

Unit
Gravitational energy is the potential energy of a mass $$m$$ which is in the gravitational field of another mass $$M$$ at a distance $$r$$ from it. The gravitational energy is negative (see the minus sign in the formula) so that the mass $$m$$ has a smaller (more negative) potential energy when it is closer to $$m$$.

## Distance

Unit
Distance of mass $$m$$ from mass $$M$$. The potential energy of the mass $$m$$ goes from negative values to zero when the mass is further away from the mass $$M$$.

## Mass

Unit
The mass of the first body, e.g. the earth.

## Mass

Unit
The mass of the second body, e.g. the moon.

## Gravitational constant

Unit
The gravitational constant is a physical constant that occurs in equations describing the interaction between masses. It has the following experimentally determined value: $$G ~\approx~ 6.674 \, 30 ~\cdot~ 10^{-11} \, \frac{ \mathrm{m}^3 }{ \mathrm{kg} \, \mathrm{s}^2 }$$

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