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Homework Help: Finding the magnitude of velocity given vx and vy

  1. Sep 9, 2009 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data
    I am working on a lab, and I have come up with graphs (and the data set) for vy vs. time and vx vs. time, but I'm not sure how to determine v? I just need to come up with the equation so solve for v, but we haven't done anything calc oriented in the course yet.

    2. Relevant equations

    3. The attempt at a solution
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 9, 2009 #2
    It has nothing to do with calculus, just simple vector addition. The horizontal component of v is vx while the vertical component of v is vy. Hence, by Pythagora's theorem, we have [tex]v^{2} = v_{x}^{2} + v_{y}^{2}[/tex]
  4. Sep 9, 2009 #3


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    Have you seen vectors? There is a right triangle with vx as one right side and vy as the other. You are looking for the speed v which is the hypotenuse of the triangle. So ...
  5. Sep 9, 2009 #4
    Okay thank you both for your help.
    I guess I just misunderstood the question, we have covered adding vectors in the course so I am able to do that.

    thanks again!
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