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: Total Displacement

  1. Sep 23, 2011 #1
    1. A hiker makes four straight line walks
    A. 15km at 48 degrees
    B. 27km at 134 degrees
    C. 28km at 193 degrees
    D. 14 km at 228 degrees

    in random directions and lengths starting at position (41km, 41km). How far from the starting point is the hiker? All angles measured in a counter-clockwise direction from the positive x-axis. Answer in units of km.
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 23, 2011 #2
    Find the X and Y component for each displacement and add them all up. If it goes left it's negative and if it goes down it's negative, vice versa. Once you have the x and y components, use the Pythagorean theorem to get the magnitude of the displacement. Use a trigonometric ratio to find the angle.
  4. Sep 23, 2011 #3
    Thank you that is what I have been doing, but my answer of 80.944 is wrong, and I can't tell where I'm going wrong.
  5. Sep 23, 2011 #4
    make sure your calculator is in degrees, other than that, it's on you to make the proper calculations.
Share this great discussion with others via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook