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Non-Uniform Circular Motion

  1. Nov 1, 2007 #1
    A car starts from rest on a curve with a radius of 120m and accelerates at 1.0m/s^2. Through what angle will the car have traveled when the magnitude of its total acceleration is 2.0m/s^2.

    This one, I am really lost on how to approach it. I have tangential acceleration at 1.0m/s^2 initially and total final acceleration at 2.0m/s^2. Unless I am interpreting this question incorrectly.

    Also another question, does a=r(w^2) only apply to uniform-circular motion or to both uniform and non-uniform?

    Thank you in advance!
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 1, 2007 #2

    PhanthomJay

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    Total acceleration is the vector sum of the tangential acceleration plus the centripetal acceleration. Centripetal acceleration exists for both uniform and non uniform circular motion; it is just that it is constant for the uniform case and non constant for the latter.
     
  4. Nov 1, 2007 #3
    Yes, but wouldn't tangential acceleration in this question be changing as a function of time? If tangential acceleration were constant, then this is a uniform circular motion.
     
  5. Nov 1, 2007 #4

    PhanthomJay

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    No, that's not correct. Uniform circular motion implies constant tangential speed, not constant tangential acceleration. Constant tangential acceleration implies a change in tangential speed; hence, motion is non-uniform.
     
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