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Average velocity= displacement/time

  1. Mar 18, 2005 #1
    Hey,

    I just some clarification for kinematics:
    am i correct to say that:

    average velocity= displacement/time
    average speed=total distance/time

    ?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 18, 2005 #2

    SpaceTiger

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    The difference between velocity and speed is just that velocity is a vector and speed is a scalar. That is, velocity has a direction and magnitude, while speed is just the magnitude. For example, you might say that your speed is 2 m/s, while your velocity is [2,0,0] m/s (or 2 m/s in the x direction).
     
  4. Mar 18, 2005 #3

    Chi Meson

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    jen333,

    Your statement is perhaps "correct enough" if you just want a general distinction between velocity and speed. As a whole what you say is not incorrect, I would rate it as incomplete if this was offered as the definitions for velocity and speed.
     
  5. Mar 18, 2005 #4
    yes that is absolutely correct.

    a person that runs around a circular track and stops where he began has zero average velocity but non-zero average speed.
     
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2005
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