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## Main Question or Discussion Point

Hello,

Does anyone know why we use the root mean square of the relative velocity in calculating the mean free path? As is done in this example:

http://galileo.phys.virginia.edu/classes/152.mf1i.spring02/MolecularCollisions.htm

Seems like it would make more sense to find the mean of the relative velocity.

Does anyone know why we use the root mean square of the relative velocity in calculating the mean free path? As is done in this example:

http://galileo.phys.virginia.edu/classes/152.mf1i.spring02/MolecularCollisions.htm

Seems like it would make more sense to find the mean of the relative velocity.