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Homework Help: Multiple Choice

  1. May 29, 2014 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data

    If a particle moves in a plane so that its position is described by the functions
    x=Acosωt, and y= Asinωt, it is
    (A) moving with varying speed along a circle
    (B) moving with constant speed along a circle
    (C) moving with constant acceleration along a straight line
    (D) moving along a parabola
    (E) oscillating back and forth along a straight line

    2. Relevant equations


    3. The attempt at a solution

    Don't understand the problem. I just need to know how to start it.
  2. jcsd
  3. May 29, 2014 #2


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    Homework Helper

    Those two functions describe the x coordinate and the y coordinate at any (and every) time "t"

    What path do you think the particle will move along and why?
    (In other words, what are all the possible (x,y) coordinates for all the times "t"?)
  4. May 30, 2014 #3


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    Staff: Mentor

    You probably won't succeed in answering this confidently without an understanding of SHM, as the question basically is testing your knowledge of the topic.

    A good place to start might be here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Simple_harmonic_motion
  5. May 31, 2014 #4


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    Just plug in a few sample values and see what you get. Where is the particle when ##\omega t## is 0? When it is ##\pi / 2##? When ##\pi##? When ## 2 \pi##?
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