Introductory PhysicsHunter CollegePosition and VelocityObjectives: Students will learn how position relates to constant velocity by predicting positions and velocities of given position vs. time and velocity vs. time graphs. Students will also calculate the slope of position vs. time graph to calculatethe velocity. Finally, students will determine position from the equation x(t) = v0 t + x0 .BackgroundAny measurement of position, distance, or speed must be made with respect to a reference frame. For example, if you are sitting on a train and someone walks downthe aisle, their speed with respect to the train is a few miles per hour, at most. Theirspeed with respect to the ground is much higher. For today’s simulation we will use the cartesian coordinate plane, xy-axis, to orient our frame of reference.Distance vs. Displacement Displacement (blue line) is how far the object is from its starting point, regardless ofhow it got there. Displacement depends on direction and thus, is a vector quantity; it can be a negative, or positive value that indicates its direction and magnitude.The displacement is written: ∆x= x2− x1Distance traveled (dashed line) is measured along the actual path. Distance is a length, and is thus a scalar quantity. Distance can be any measure x ≥ 0 units.Average Speed vs. VelocitySpeed is how far an object travels in a given time intervalVelocity is speed and includes directional information. For constant velocity, non-accelerated motion, we can use the equation v= ∆x/∆t to solve for either position, or velocity, or time, if we know the other quantities.Page 1of 8

Pre-Lab Questions1.Consider a deer that runs from point A to point B. The distance the deer runs can be greater than the magnitude of its displacement, but the magnitude of the displacement can never be greater than the distance it runs.2.Consider a car that travels between points A and B. The car's average speed can be greater than the magnitude of its average velocity, but the magnitude of its average velocity can never be greater than its average speed.