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# PHYSICS 71

## 06 Position, Velocity and

Acceleration Vectors
JAMES N. VANCE
National Institute of Physics
College of Science
University of the Philippines Diliman

Objectives
At the end of this session, you should be able to:
Express position, velocity, and acceleration in two
and three dimensions using vector representation.

## Interpret the components of a body's acceleration

parallel to and perpendicular to its path.

dimensions.

## 06 Position, Velocity and Acceleration Vectors

16-Jun-16

Recall: Vectors
Component form

y
%,

~
A

~
A

%*
%&

z
!/# = %& ' + %* +

.
!"# = %& ' + %* + + %, -

16-Jun-16

## 1 The position vector Sr from the origin to

point P has components x, y, and z. The
path that the particle follows through space
in general
curve
(Fig. 2).
u Describes the position of a is
particle
in athe
Cartesian

Position Vector

## An object at point 0(2, 4, 5) has

the positon vector:
.
7 = 2' + 4+ + 5-

Position P of a particle
at a given time has
coordinates x, y, z.
z k^
P

y j^
xi^

16-Jun-16

plane/space

## Position vector of point P

has components x, y, z:
r
^
r 5 xi^ 1 yj^ 1 zk.
Fig: University Physics 13 th Ed, H. Young and R.
Freedman, Pearson Education 2014

## average velocity vav between points

Displacement2 The
Vector
P1 and P2 has the same direction as the
u As the particle moves
from 08
toSr0. / over a time interval
displacement
:, it traces a curved path

sca
by
is
x-v

## The change in positon is

the displacement vector:

P2

7 = 7/ 78
S

r2

Dr

r1
O

Particles path

P1

vav 5

Dr
Dt

Displacement
S
vector Dr points
from P1 to P2.
Position at time t1
x

## 06 Position, Velocity and Acceleration Vectors

16-Jun-16

Position at time t2

as
ch
ne

Th
ins
pa

## Fig: University Physics 13 th Ed, H. Young and R.

Freedman, Pearson Education 2014

## average velocity vav between points

Displacement2 The
Vector
P1 and P2 has the same direction as the
u As the particle moves
from 08
toSr0. / over a time interval
displacement
:, it traces a curved path

sca
by
is
x-v

## The change in positon is

the displacement vector:

P2

7 = 7/ 78
S

r2

Dr

r1
O

Particles path

P1

vav 5

Dr
Dt

Displacement
S
vector Dr points
from P1 to P2.

## 06 Position, Velocity and Acceleration Vectors

16-Jun-16

Position at time t2

as
ch
ne

Position at time t1
x

(28, 48 , 58 )Th

ins
pa

## Fig: University Physics 13 th Ed, H. Young and R.

Freedman, Pearson Education 2014

## average velocity vav between points

Displacement2 The
Vector
P1 and P2 has the same direction as the
u As the particle moves
from 08
toSr0. / over a time interval
displacement
:, it traces a curved path

sca
by
is
x-v

## The change in positon is

the displacement vector:

P2

7 = 7/ 78
S

r2

Dr

r1
O

Particles path

P1

vav 5

Dr
Dt

Displacement
S
vector Dr points
from P1 to P2.

## 06 Position, Velocity and Acceleration Vectors

16-Jun-16

Position at time t2

as
ch
ne

Position at time t1
x

(28, 48 , 58 )Th

ins
pa

## Fig: University Physics 13 th Ed, H. Young and R.

Freedman, Pearson Education 2014

## average velocity vav between points

Displacement2 The
Vector
P1 and P2 has the same direction as the
u As the particle moves
from 08
toSr0. / over a time interval
displacement
:, it traces a curved path

sca
by
is
x-v

## The change in positon is

the displacement vector:

P2

7 = 7/ 78
S

7 =
2/ 28 ' + 4/ 48 +
.
+(5/ 58 )-

r2
S

r1
O

Dr

Particles path

P1

vav 5

Dr
Dt

Displacement
S
vector Dr points
from P1 to P2.

## 06 Position, Velocity and Acceleration Vectors

16-Jun-16

Position at time t2

as
ch
ne

Position at time t1
x

(28, 48 , 58 )Th

ins
pa

## Fig: University Physics 13 th Ed, H. Young and R.

Freedman, Pearson Education 2014

2 The average
velocity vav between points
Average Velocity
Vector
P1 and P2 has the same direction as the
S
u Net displacementdisplacement
per unit time:
r.
7/ 78 7
<=> =
=
Position at time t2
y
:/ :8
:
(2/, 4/, 5/)

sca
by
is
x-v

r2

Dr

r1
O

Particles path

P1

vav 5

Dr
Dt

Displacement
S
vector Dr points
from P1 to P2.

## 06 Position, Velocity and Acceleration Vectors

16-Jun-16

P2

as
ch
ne

Position at time t1
x

(28, 48 , 58 )Th

ins
pa

## Fig: University Physics 13 th Ed, H. Young and R.

Freedman, Pearson Education 2014

S
of
r
of r in
in this
this limit
limit is
is also
also th
th
Instantaneous Velocity Vector
an important
important conclusion
conclusio
toto an
velocity vector is tangent to
v1 and S
v2 are the instanta3 The vectors S
u The instantaneous rate of change of position
with
time
velocity
vector
is
tangent
to
3 Thevelocities
vectors vat1 and
are
the
instantaIts
often
easiest
to
calc
neous
the vpoints
and
P
P
1
2
2
7
shown
in
Fig.
2.
nents.
Duringeasiest
any displace
< =P1lim
Its
often
to calc
neous velocities at the points
and
P
2
BCE :
coordinates of the particle
y 2.
shown in Fig.
nents.
any
displace
nents vDuring
and
,
v
,
v
x
y
z of the
v2
tives ofalong
the coordinates
x, ya
ofthethe particle
At every coordinates
point
y
path, the instantaneous
P2
nents visx, tangent
vy, and
vz of the
dx
velocity
vector
S
The instantaneous
vx =
vy =
v
tives
of
the
coordinates
x, y
to
the
path
at
that
point.
dt
2
velocity vector v is
S

16-Jun-16

## tangent to the path

at each point.
P

O
The instantaneous
S
velocity vector v is
tangent
to thepath
path
Particles
at each point.

v1

The x-component of v is v
neous velocitydxfor straightvx =
vveloc
y =
idea of instantaneous

P1

dt

v1

The x-component of v is v
Fig: University Physics 13 th Ed, H. Young and R.
Freedman, Pearson Education 2014

## Instantaneous Velocity Vector

The instantaneous rate of change of position with time
7
< = lim
BCE :

Components:
2
G& = lim
BCE :

4
G* = lim
BCE :

d7 d2
d4
d5 .
<=
=
' +
+ + d: d:
d:
d:
u

Magnitude:
< =G=

5
G, = lim
BCE :

16-Jun-16

S
e of v) is

## 4 The two velocity components for

motion in the xy-plane.

y

vy

## nteresting and useful than the

he word velocity, we will
her than the average velocity
tor; its up to you to rememude and direction.

Particles path in
the xy-plane

(7)

vx
O

components of v.

## 06 Position, Velocity and Acceleration Vectors

16-Jun-16

Components in 2D:
< = G& ' + G*+
given by the angle a (the
u

## The instantaneous velocity vector v

is always tangent to the path.

## Fig: University Physics 13 th Ed, H. Young and R.

Freedman, Pearson Education 2014

S
e of v) is

## 4 The two velocity components for

motion in the xy-plane.

y

vy

## nteresting and useful than the

he word velocity, we will
her than the average velocity
tor; its up to you to rememude and direction.

Particles path in
the xy-plane

(7)

vx
O

components of v.

## 06 Position, Velocity and Acceleration Vectors

16-Jun-16

Components in 2D:
< = G& ' + G*+
given by the angle a (the
u

## The instantaneous velocity vector v

is always tangent to the path.

## Fig: University Physics 13 th Ed, H. Young and R.

Freedman, Pearson Education 2014

S
e of v) is

## 4 The two velocity components for

motion in the xy-plane.

## Instantaneous Velocity Vector (2D)

vy

Magnitude:
< =G=

G&/ + (7)
G*/

r the
direction of the instanu Direction angle:
direction u ofG*the position
tan K =
G&
nteresting and useful than the
he word velocity, we will
her than the average velocity
tor; its up to you to rememude and direction.

Particles path in
the xy-plane

vx
O

components of v.

## 06 Position, Velocity and Acceleration Vectors

16-Jun-16

Components in 2D:
< = G& ' + G*+
given by the angle a (the
u

## The instantaneous velocity vector v

is always tangent to the path.

## Fig: University Physics 13 th Ed, H. Young and R.

Freedman, Pearson Education 2014

## 06 Position, Velocity and Acceleration Vectors

16-Jun-16

ity of
EXERCISES
directi
Example
Section 3.1 Position and Velocity Vectors
magni
3.1 . A squirrel has x- and y-coordinates 11.1 m, 3.4 m2 at time 3.9 .
t 1 = 0 and coordinates 15.3 m, - 0.5 m2 at time t 2 = 3.0 s. For of 1.1
this time interval, find (a) the components of the average velocity, Find (
and (b) the magnitude and direction of the average velocity.
tal dis
3.2 . A rhinoceros is at the origin of coordinates at time t 1 = 0. strikes
Position vectors
For the time interval from t 1 = 0 to t 2 = 12.0 s, the rhinos aver- books
0age
28 = 1.1 m,
48 = 3.4 m -3.8 m>s
+ 3.4 m + just be
velocity
has x-component
y-component
78 =and
1.1 m '
8
(a) what are the
y-coordinates
t 2 = 12.0
m>s.2/At=time
0.5 m + vy-t gr
04.9
5.3 m,
4/ =s,0.5 m
7/ x= and
5.3 m '
/
of the rhino? (b) How far is the rhino from the origin?
.
3.10
Component
form
thedesigner
average
velocity
3.3 .. CALC A
web of
page
creates
an animation in which a mer d
S
7a / computer
78
0.5 m +
1.1 m '
+34.0

5.3 m 'has
3.4 m +
dot
on
screen
a
position
of
"
cm
+
r
ning h
<=> = 2 2
=
:n8 ! 15.0 cm>s2tn. (a) Find
3 s 0 s
the magnitude and Fig. E
12.5 cm>s:/2t4
direction of the dots average velocity between t = 0 and mum
4.2 m ' 3.9m +
5.3 1.1 m ' + 0.5 3.4 m +
t = 2.0
= of the instanta- the top
= s. (b) Find the magnitude and direction
3.0 s the
neous velocity at t = 0,3.0 s
t = 1.0 s, and t = 2.0 s. (c) Sketch
miss
= 1.4 msfrom
' t1.3
dots trajectory
=m
0 tos +t = 2.0 s, and show the velocities which
Problem Set. University Physics 13 Ed, H. Young
and R. Freedman, Pearson Education 2014
calculated in part (b).
th

Example

Magnitude
G=> =
G=> =

/
/
G=>W&
+ G=>W*

1.4 ms

+ 1.3 ms

= 1.9 ms

Direction Angle
G=>W* 1.3 ms
tan X =
=
G=>W&
1.4 ms
X = 43

G=>W*

G=>W&

<=>

16-Jun-16

## Components of the average velocity

G=>W& = 1.4 ms , G=>W* = 1.3 ms

u

16-Jun-16

## Rate of change in the velocity (speed and direction)

over a time interval
</ <8 <
Z=> =
=
:/ :8
:

Average3.6
Acceleration
Vector
(a) A car moving along
a curved road from P1 to P2 . (b
S

## tion. (c) The vector a av ! v/t represents the average acc

u Illustrative Example
(b)
S

v2

v1

P1

P2

16-Jun-16

(a)

## This car accelerates by slowing

while rounding a curve. (Its
instantaneous velocity changes in
both magnitude and direction.)

v1

P1

To find the ca
P1 and P2, we
S
D v by subtrac
S
S
S
v1 1 D v 5 v

## Fig: University Physics 13 th Ed, H. Young and R.

Freedman, Pearson Education 2014

Average3.6
Acceleration
Vector
(a) A car moving along
a curved road from P1 to P2 . (b
S

## tion. (c) The vector a av ! v/t represents the average acc

u Illustrative Example
(b)
S

v2

v1

P1

P2

16-Jun-16

(a)

## This car accelerates by slowing

while rounding a curve. (Its
instantaneous velocity changes in
both magnitude and direction.)

v1

P1

To find the ca
P1 and P2, we
S
D v by subtrac
S
S
S
v1 1 D v 5 v

## Fig: University Physics 13 th Ed, H. Young and R.

Freedman, Pearson Education 2014

curved
the change in velocity v ! v
Average
Vector
1 to P2 . (b) How to obtain
t represents the average acceleration between P1 and P2 .
u Illustrative Example
(b)

(c)

v2
P2
S

v1

v1
P1

v1

D v 5 v2 2 v1
P1

v2

## To find the cars average acceleration between

P1 and P2, we first find the change in velocity
S
S
S
D v by subtracting v1 from v2. (Notice that
S
S
S
v1 1 D v 5 v2.)

16-Jun-16

tes by slowing
rve. (Its
changes in
tion.)

Dv

as the change in

## Fig: University Physics 13 th Ed, H. Young and R.

Freedman, Pearson Education 2014

curved
the change in velocity v ! v
Average
Vector
1 to P2 . (b) How to obtain
t represents the average acceleration between P1 and P2 .
u Illustrative Example
(b)

(c)

v2
P2
S

v1

v1
P1

v1

D v 5 v2 2 v1
P1

v2

## To find the cars average acceleration between

P1 and P2, we first find the change in velocity
S
S
S
D v by subtracting v1 from v2. (Notice that
S
S
S
v1 1 D v 5 v2.)

16-Jun-16

tes by slowing
rve. (Its
changes in
tion.)

Dv

as the change in

## Fig: University Physics 13 th Ed, H. Young and R.

Freedman, Pearson Education 2014

curved
the change in velocity v ! v
Average
Vector
1 to P2 . (b) How to obtain
t represents the average acceleration between P1 and P2 .
u Illustrative Example
(b)

(c)

v2
P2
S

v1

v1
P1

v1

D v 5 v2 2 v1
P1

v2

## To find the cars average acceleration between

P1 and P2, we first find the change in velocity
S
S
S
D v by subtracting v1 from v2. (Notice that
S
S
S
v1 1 D v 5 v2.)

16-Jun-16

tes by slowing
rve. (Its
changes in
tion.)

Dv

as the change in

## Fig: University Physics 13 th Ed, H. Young and R.

Freedman, Pearson Education 2014

curved
the change in velocity v ! v
Average
Vector
1 to P2 . (b) How to obtain
t represents the average acceleration between P1 and P2 .
u Illustrative Example
(b)

(c)

v2
P2
S

v1

v1
P1

v1

D v 5 v2 2 v1
P1

v2

## To find the cars average acceleration between

P1 and P2, we first find the change in velocity
S
S
S
D v by subtracting v1 from v2. (Notice that
S
S
S
v1 1 D v 5 v2.)

16-Jun-16

tes by slowing
rve. (Its
changes in
tion.)

Dv

as the change in

## Fig: University Physics 13 th Ed, H. Young and R.

Freedman, Pearson Education 2014

theAverage
change in velocity
vector subtracv ! v2 " v1 by Vector
Acceleration
en P1 and P2 .
u Illustrative Example
S

16-Jun-16

(c)

v2
P2
S

v1

D v 5 v2 2 v1
S

v2

ration between
nge in velocity
Notice that

P1

Dv

aav

5 Dv
Dt

## The average acceleration has the same direction

S
as the change in velocity, Dv.
Fig: University Physics 13 th Ed, H. Young and R.
Freedman, Pearson Education 2014

theAverage
change in velocity
vector subtracv ! v2 " v1 by Vector
Acceleration
en P1 and P2 .
u Illustrative Example
S

16-Jun-16

(c)

v2
P2
S

v1

D v 5 v2 2 v1
S

v2

ration between
nge in velocity
Notice that

P1

Dv

aav

5 Dv
Dt

## The average acceleration has the same direction

S
as the change in velocity, Dv.
Fig: University Physics 13 th Ed, H. Young and R.
Freedman, Pearson Education 2014

theAverage
change in velocity
vector subtracv ! v2 " v1 by Vector
Acceleration
en P1 and P2 .
u Illustrative Example
S

16-Jun-16

(c)

v2
P2
S

v1

D v 5 v2 2 v1
S

v2

ration between
nge in velocity
Notice that

P1

Dv

aav

5 Dv
Dt

## The average acceleration has the same direction

S
as the change in velocity, Dv.
Fig: University Physics 13 th Ed, H. Young and R.
Freedman, Pearson Education 2014

u

## Instantaneous rate of change of velocity with time

d< d/ 7
Z=
= [
d: d:
u

Components:
G&
\& = lim
BCE :

G*
\* = lim
BCE :
.
Z = \& ' + \* + + \, -

Magnitude:
Z =\=

G,
\, = lim
BCE :

16-Jun-16

<
Z = lim
BCE :

line.

## Instantaneous Acceleration Vector

(a) Acceleration: curved trajectory

<
Z = lim
BCE :

P1
S

v1

approach 0.

## 06 Position, Velocity and Acceleration Vectors

16-Jun-16

S
To find the instantaneous v
2
acceleration
P2
S
S
a at P1 ...
v1
S
... we take the limit of aav
as P2 approaches P1 ...

line.

## Instantaneous Acceleration Vector

(a) Acceleration: curved trajectory

P1
S

v1

approach 0.

## 06 Position, Velocity and Acceleration Vectors

16-Jun-16

S
To find the instantaneous v
2
acceleration
P2
S
S
a at P1 ...
v1
S
... we take the limit of aav
as P2 approaches P1 ...

line.

## Instantaneous Acceleration Vector

(a) Acceleration: curved trajectory

P1
S

v1

approach 0.

## 06 Position, Velocity and Acceleration Vectors

16-Jun-16

S
To find the instantaneous v
2
acceleration
P2
S
S
a at P1 ...
v1
S
... we take the limit of aav
as P2 approaches P1 ...

as P2 approaches P1 ...

P1

P1

## ... meaning that Dv and Dt

approach 0.
S

a 5 lim Dv
DtS0 Dt

Acceleration points to
concave side of path.
(b) Acceleration: straight-line trajectory

## 06 Position, Velocity and Acceleration Vectors

16-Jun-16

v1

as P2 approaches P1 ...

P1

P1

## ... meaning that Dv and Dt

approach 0.
S

a 5 lim Dv
DtS0 Dt

Acceleration points to
concave side of path.
(b) Acceleration: straight-line trajectory

## 06 Position, Velocity and Acceleration Vectors

16-Jun-16

v1

as P2 approaches P1 ...

P1

P1

## ... meaning that Dv and Dt

approach 0.
S

a 5 lim Dv
DtS0 Dt

Acceleration points to
concave side of path.
(b) Acceleration: straight-line trajectory

16-Jun-16

v1

## Direction of the Acceleration Vector

(b) Acceleration: straight-line trajectory

S

v2

P2
S

v1
P1

Dv

Dv
a 5 lim
DtS0 Dt

## ... is the acceleration in the

direction of the trajectory.

16-Jun-16

## Only if the trajectory is

a straight line ...

## Direction of the Acceleration Vector

(b) Acceleration: straight-line trajectory

S

v2

P2
S

v1
P1

Dv

Dv
a 5 lim
DtS0 Dt

## ... is the acceleration in the

direction of the trajectory.

16-Jun-16

## Only if the trajectory is

a straight line ...

## Direction of the Acceleration Vector

(b) Acceleration: straight-line trajectory

S

v2

P2
S

v1
P1

Dv

Dv
a 5 lim
DtS0 Dt

## ... is the acceleration in the

direction of the trajectory.

16-Jun-16

## Only if the trajectory is

a straight line ...

When acceleration
is parallel
S
direction
doesnt.
v1
to the velocity, it acts to
S
a
change(a)
theparallel
magnitude
S
S
n directed
to and of
(b)the
perpendicular tovSa 5
partiv
1
Dv
2
1
velocity.

## Changes only direction of

velocity: particle follows
When acceleration
is path at constant
curved
perpendicular speed.
to the velocity,
S
S
it
acts
to
change the
5
v
1
Dv
2
1

Dv

v1
f
S

v2 5 v1 1 Dv
S

Com
(b)
perpe

Cha
velo
cur
spe

## 06 Position, Velocity and Acceleration Vectors

16-Jun-16

velocity.
e. Hence during cles
the time
interval t the particle in
(a)
parallel toFig.
velocity
Direction
ofAcceleration
the
Vector
t line
with increasing
speedAcceleration
(compare
3.7b).
S
ion is perpendicular
to
the
velocity,
so
a has
only a
Changes only magnitude
S
Dv t, the
(that is, a = 02.
In a small
interval
of velocity:
speedtime
changes;

ity v1 ,
S
ge v
in the
tion as
icle in
7b).
only a

the path

Particles path

a ||
aS

P
a
S

Component of a
perpendicular to the path

Normal to
path at P

16-Jun-16

## bout a into a component a parallel to the path

theAcceleration
tangent to the path) and a
toComponents
the (that is, alongof
component a! perpendicular to the path
ndicuu Z may
beis,
resolved
Z and
^
(that
along theinto
normal
to theZpath).
ells us
Tangent to path at P
nt a !
S
paralv
Component of
er two Sa parallel to

ity v1 ,
S
ge v
in the
tion as
icle in
7b).
only a

the path

Particles path

a ||
aS

P
a
S

Component of a
perpendicular to the path

Normal to
path at P

16-Jun-16

## bout a into a component a parallel to the path

theAcceleration
tangent to the path) and a
toComponents
the (that is, alongof
component a! perpendicular to the path
ndicuu Z may
beis,
resolved
Z and
^
(that
along theinto
normal
to theZpath).
ells us
Tangent to path at P
nt a !
S
paralv
Component of
er two Sa parallel to

ity v1 ,
S
ge v
in the
tion as
icle in
7b).
only a

the path

Particles path

a ||
aS

P
a
S

Component of a
perpendicular to the path

Normal to
path at P

16-Jun-16

## bout a into a component a parallel to the path

theAcceleration
tangent to the path) and a
toComponents
the (that is, alongof
component a! perpendicular to the path
ndicuu Z may
beis,
resolved
Z and
^
(that
along theinto
normal
to theZpath).
ells us
Tangent to path at P
nt a !
S
paralv
Component of
er two Sa parallel to

ity v1 ,
S
ge v
in the
tion as
icle in
7b).
only a

the path

Particles path

a ||
aS

P
a
S

Component of a
perpendicular to the path

Normal to
path at P

16-Jun-16

## bout a into a component a parallel to the path

theAcceleration
tangent to the path) and a
toComponents
the (that is, alongof
component a! perpendicular to the path
ndicuu Z may
beis,
resolved
Z and
^
(that
along theinto
normal
to theZpath).
ells us
Tangent to path at P
nt a !
S
paralv
Component of
er two Sa parallel to

a skier

Components of Acceleration

ier is moving in
eleration points
points D, E, and
cceleration has a (b)
concave side of
is also an accelbecause she is
nt E, the skiers
is maximum at
fore no parallel
ndicular to her
nent opposite to
wing down. The
mal to her path.
cceleration after

Direction
of motion

C
D

## 06 Position, Velocity and Acceleration Vectors

16-Jun-16

a). The ramp is 3.14 (a) The skiers path. (b) Our solution.
point C onward.
Determine the direction of
int A to point E, (a)
A
er passing point
the acceleration vector at
at each of the
each point.

a skier

Components of Acceleration

ier is moving in
eleration points
points D, E, and
cceleration has a (b)
concave side of
is also an accelbecause she is
nt E, the skiers
is maximum at
fore no parallel
ndicular to her
nent opposite to
wing down. The
mal to her path.
cceleration after

## 06 Position, Velocity and Acceleration Vectors

16-Jun-16

a). The ramp is 3.14 (a) The skiers path. (b) Our solution.
point C onward.
Determine the direction of
int A to point E, (a)
A
er passing point
the acceleration vector at
at each of the
each point.
Direction
of motion

C
D

QUIZ

Quiz II (4-9)
Draw the velocity and acceleration vectors of a cart
running on a loop-the-loop at (a) the top, (b) the
rightmost, and (c) the leftmost part of the loop.

You may draw the figure twice (one for v and one for a)

16-Jun-16

Quiz