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10
Vectors: We will for the moment deal with 1D and 2D cases.
A
scalar
is a quantity that has a
value, but no direction
. A scalar can be
positive or negative
. Scalar
arithmetic is the usual stuff you learned through grade school: addition, subtraction, multiplication,
division, and raising to a power. We can also take the absolute magnitude of a scalar. Normal algebraic
symbols (x, y, t, m) are used for scalars. Scalar quantities in physics include mass, time, energy, charge,
and temperature.
A
vector
is a quantity in which magnitude and direction are both important. Vector quantities in physics
include velocity, force, momentum, and electric field. We need
(a) ways to draw vectors on a diagram,
(b) ways to quantify vectors with numbers, and
(c) methods to do arithmetic operations on vectors—these include “addition”, “subtraction”, and
“multiplication”, we use the same words as for scalars but define the operation differently.
Geometrical Representation of Vectors
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This note was uploaded on 02/17/2012 for the course CHM 4410 taught by Professor Dr.kroto during the Fall '10 term at FSU.
 Fall '10
 Dr.Kroto
 Physical chemistry, pH

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