1. Limited time only! Sign up for a free 30min personal tutor trial with Chegg Tutors
    Dismiss Notice
Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Homework Help: Parametized curves

  1. Oct 5, 2009 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data
    A tank is travelling in a straight line we look at the side on view of the tank and consider its continuous track in contact with the x-axis. Its wheels have radius [tex]R[/tex] and the distance between he centers of the wheels is [tex]L[/tex] (The continuous track is wrapped around the wheels). Consider a point M(t) on the track.

    We suppose that at t = 0 the point M(0) = (0, 0) is on the ground under the centre of
    the back wheel. Give a parametrisation of the curve with respect to the first coordinate
    (denoted by t) of the centre of the back wheel.

    2. Relevant equations

    3. The attempt at a solution
    I'm having diffuculty understanding whether I should get the parametric equation of the curve traced by a fixed point on the track, or the parametric equation of the track in a stationary moving frame
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2009
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 5, 2009 #2


    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper
    Gold Member

    Draw a side view with the wheels resting on the x axis. Imagine a piece of chalk glued to the wheel at the origin. As the wheels roll to the right the chalk will trace out a curve on your paper. I think that's the curve for which the equations are required.
Share this great discussion with others via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook