Solving for Displacement & Avg Velocity of Ocean Swimmer

  • Thread starter pivoxa15
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In summary, the swimmer is 5km from the coast in a north-south direction, with a lighthouse bearing of N70E. After 30 minutes, the swimmer is 5km due west from the lighthouse. The displacement between the two measurements is 1.82km and the average velocity of the swimmer remains the same.
  • #1
pivoxa15
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Homework Statement


At a particular time, a long distance ocean swimmer is 5km from a coast line that stretches in a north south direction. One of the passengers on the boat accompanying the swimmer determines that a lighthouse on the coastline has a bearing of N70E. After 30 minutes the swimmer is 5km due west of the lighthouse.
a) What is the displacement of the swimmer between the two measurements?
b) What is the average velocity of the swimmer?


Homework Equations




The Attempt at a Solution


I drew a diagram with this question but if going according to the scenario, it would mean the swimmer ends up on the other side of the shore. But how thick is the shore? I don't think my diagram is correct. Should the last sentence contain the word east instead of west?
 
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  • #2
No, I think it is correct. I think it means the swimmer is 5 km west from the point of view of the lighthouse, not the other way around.
 
  • #3
In that case, the swimmer hasn't changed position longitudinally (i.e. still 5km from the coastline). Simple trig shows that the displacement is 1.82km with tan(70)=5/x => x=1.82 which is what the answers suggested. So that's that figured out.
 

What is displacement and average velocity?

Displacement refers to the change in position or location of an object. In the context of an ocean swimmer, it would be the distance and direction they have moved from their starting point. Average velocity, on the other hand, is the average rate at which the swimmer changes position over a specific time period.

Why is it important to solve for displacement and average velocity of an ocean swimmer?

Calculating displacement and average velocity allows us to accurately track and measure the swimmer's progress and performance. It also helps us understand the efficiency and speed of their movements in the water.

What factors can affect the displacement and average velocity of an ocean swimmer?

The displacement and average velocity of an ocean swimmer can be affected by various factors such as the swimmer's physical ability, the current and tides, the water temperature, and the equipment they are using.

How can displacement and average velocity be calculated for an ocean swimmer?

To calculate displacement, we need to know the initial and final positions of the swimmer and use the distance formula. Average velocity can be calculated by dividing displacement by the time taken to cover that distance.

What units are used to measure displacement and average velocity?

Displacement is typically measured in meters (m) or kilometers (km), while average velocity is measured in meters per second (m/s) or kilometers per hour (km/h).

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