How is velocity different from speed?



  1. 0 Votes

    Speed measures total distance covered relative to time, while velocity is a measure of displacement relative to time.  I would highly suggest checking out the animations on the link I’ve posted here if you are unsure what the difference between distance and displacement.  But I’ll try to explain.

    Imagine you are hiking on a windy path from point A to point B a few miles away.  Obviously, you don’t have the option of taking the shortest path (a straight line from A to B).  You have to follow the trail.  Your speed would be measured by the distance you actually traveled on that windy path, divided by the time it took for you to complete the path.

    Velocity, however, measures the actual vector (straight line path) you followed from start point to end point.  So since you started at A and ended at B, you would use that straight line as your total amount of displacement and disregard the windy path you had to take.

    Really though, just check out the animations…. they do a much better job at explaining this 🙂

Please signup or login to answer this question.

Sorry,At this time user registration is disabled. We will open registration soon!