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1
VECTORS
DEF
:
A vector
is a quantity that has both magnitude and direction.
DEF
:
A scalar
is a quantity that has magnitude but NO direction.
Ex. Vectors
Ex.
Scalars
Force
Temperature
V
e
l
o
c
i
t
y
T
i
m
e
Displacement
Mass
Momentum
Speed
Vector Notation
A
– Boldface letters
A
G
 Arrow above letter
A – Magnitude of vector
A
A vector is defined graphically by an arrow whose length is proportional to
the magnitude of the vector quantity. The direction of the arrow points in
the direction of the vector quantity.
Adding Vectors Graphically
Consider adding two vectors
A
and
B
graphically.
The two vectors are
shown below.
q
q
A
B
A
B
R
f
1. Select an appropriate scale. (Ex. 20 cm = 5 N)
2. Draw vector
A
to scale and in the proper direction.
3. Draw vector
B
to the same scale with its tail at the tip of
A
and in the
proper direction.
4. The resultant vector
R
=
A
+
B
is the vector drawn from the tail of
vector
A
to the tip of vector
B
.
5. Calculate the magnitude of the resultant vector
R
using the selected
scale and measure its direction with a protractor.
6. This same process applies if you add more than two vectors.
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This method of adding vectors graphically is also referred to as the head
totail method, analytical method, and geometric method.
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This note was uploaded on 09/02/2011 for the course PHYS 2A taught by Professor Luna during the Fall '09 term at DeAnza College.
 Fall '09
 Luna
 Physics, Force, Mass, Momentum

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