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Adding/subtracting in polar coordinates?

  1. Sep 7, 2004 #1
    How do you add or subtract in polar coordinates if not given the rectangular coordinates? Thanks.
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 7, 2004 #2

    Dr Transport

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    Convert to rectangular coordinates then add/subtract. Convert back to polar coordinates.
  4. Sep 7, 2004 #3


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    Adding and subtracting what? Coordinates apply to points and you don't add or subtract points. If you are talking about vectors, then you will have to establish what you "basis" vectors are. In Cartesian coordinates, you can take the unit vectors in the x y directions as basis vectors. You can't do that in polar coordinates.
  5. Sep 7, 2004 #4
    Thanks. I thought that was the only way to do it. Sorry for not being so clear. I was trying to add complex numbers in the polar form.
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