What is the equation for speed?
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Q:

What is the equation for speed?

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Quick Answer

The most common equation for speed is: speed = distance / time. It can also be expressed as the time derivative of the distance traveled. Mathematically, it can be written as v = s/t, or v = (ds/dt), where speed is denoted by v, distance is denoted by s, and time is denoted by t. In case of uniform velocity, the first equation is used.

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Full Answer

Speed is often confused with velocity and is thought to have the same meaning. In terms of physics, speed and velocity are two different things. Speed is a scalar quantity, which means that there is no direction attached with its definition and only represents the magnitude of its velocity. Velocity is a vector quantity and represents both the speed of an object and its direction. For example if a car travels north at 40 miles per hour, then its speed is 40 miles per hour and its velocity is 40 miles per hour to the north.

Speed is associated with the concept of distance, whereas velocity is associated with displacement. Distance, a scalar quantity, represents the length an object has covered during its time of motion. Displacement, a vector quantity, represents how far the object has moved away from its initial position during its time of motion.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    What is the formula for speed?

    A:

    The formula for speed is s = d/t, where s equals the speed, d is the distance covered and t is the time it took to cover the distance. The formula for finding the instantaneous speed at a specific point is found by taking the derivative of the speed equation.

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  • Q:

    What is the physics equation for speed?

    A:

    The speed of an object is equal to the distance it travels divided by the amount of time it takes to travel the distance. This actually measures the average speed; instantaneous speed is the speed of an object at a given instant (as the time period approaches zero).

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    What is the equation for centrifugal force?

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    The equation for centrifugal force is Fc = mv2/r, where m equals the mass of an object, v is the speed and r is the radius, or distance from the center. Centrifugal force is defined as the outward force that an object seems to experience when it moves in a circle.

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    What is the free-fall equation?

    A:

    The equation to calculate a free-falling object's velocity or time spent falling is velocity equals gravitational acceleration multiplied by time. This occurs if three conditions are given: an initial velocity of zero, a hypothetical infinite space to fall in and negligible air resistance.

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