Just wondering if I am using the concept of potential energy and conservation of energy correctly in the following thought experiment.
Lets say we take a compressed spring into space. If we attach a mass to each end and than let it go after a while the spring will return to its equillibrium position and the masses will have a certain kinetic energy(lets say the springs kinetic energy in this case is negligible).
Does this mean if I let the compressed spring go with no masses attached, after the spring returns to equillibrium its kinetic energy is equal to that of the masses in the previous case?
My other question is: So this would mean if I could build a very light spring and than let it go in space it would be translating or rotating very fast?