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Direction of Acceleration Vector

  1. Sep 26, 2013 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data

    What is true about the direction the acceleration vector points in circular motion situations?

    2. Relevant equations

    a It is perpendicular to the motion.
    b There is no acceleration.
    c It points opposite the motion.
    d It points parallel to the motion.


    3. The attempt at a solution
    I got a, because if the object goes in a circle and the centripedal force pulls it it, it's perpendicular. Am I right?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 26, 2013 #2
    Centripetal perhaps? And yes, you are correct.
     
  4. Sep 26, 2013 #3
    Thank you so much :) Good to know about the spelling. You learn something new every day!
     
  5. Sep 26, 2013 #4
    The direction of centripetal acceleration is perpendicular to the motion .But the question asks direction of acceleration vector which may or may not be perpendicular to the motion .The direction of net acceleration vector is perpendicular only in case of uniform circular motion.

    The question should either specify that it is a uniform circular motion or should ask the direction of centripetal acceleration .Only then ,the options make sense.
     
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