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As you know, there are 2 main kinds of motion:

A: Motion with a constant velocity (i.e velocity does not


change & acc. = 0 m.s
-2
).

B: Motion with constant acceleration:
+ acceleration (velocity increasing uniformly). OR
acceleration (velocity decreasing uniformly).
Cons. Velocity + acceleration - acceleration
Motion
1
Instantaneous velocity is the displacement (the
change in position) divided by a
very small/minute time interval.

It is a vector quantity that has
the same direction as the displacement vector
used.

The size or magnitude of the instantaneous
velocity at an instant is equal to its instantaneous
speed, has the same units, but no direction.
The same equation can be used to find these
values. v = x/t
Instantaneous speed
2
The motion of an object can be described in
words &/or diagrams &/or graphs &/or
equations.

It is important that we know how to
understand & interpret what is happening to
the object from any one of these forms.

Constant velocity:
In uniform motion (or constant velocity), equal
displacements are covered in equal time
intervals & acceleration equals 0 ms
-2
.

Constant velocity vs acceleration
3
Accelerated motion:
Uniform accelerated motion means that
velocity increases (or decreases) by the same
amount during each time interval.

If you are given any of these formats start
off by drawing a diagram to help with the
understanding and interpretation of the
situation.
4
t/s 0 2 4 6
v/m.s
-1
0

4 8 12
x/m 0 4 16 36
The following shows a motor cyclist accelerating
from rest:
t = time, v = velocity, x = displacement
Above diagram is not to scale.
Calculating
acceleration
5
We see the velocity of the biker is increasing by
4 m.s
-1
for each additional 2 seconds and this
increase is constant. The displacement values are all
measured from the start position.

The acceleration is = change in velocity
change in time
a = v
t
= 4 m.s
-1

2 s
= 2 m.s
-2
forward


= change in
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There are 4 important equations used when
studying uniformly accelerated motion and these
are called the equations of motion.

When using the equations:
1. Make a sketch of the situation
2. Identify a reference point & select a direction.
3. Write down symbols for variables & check
signs
4. Identify appropriate equation.
5. Substitute & solve for unknown variable
Sometimes more than 1 equation may be used.
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v
i
= initial or first velocity
v
f
= final or second velocity
t = time
x = displacement
N.B Only for constant
or average velocity
If object starts from rest, then v
i
= 0 m.s
-1
and if
object comes to rest, then v
f
= 0 m.s
-1
v
f
= v
i
+ at
x =
v
i
+ v
f
2
x t
x = v
i
t + at
2
v
f
2
= v
i
2
+ 2ax
v =
x
t
Equations & graphs
8
Graphs are also very important for
understanding, explaining & interpreting
motion.

There are 3 main types of graphs for studying
the motion of an object:

Distance vs time
Velocity vs time
Acceleration vs time
Once you understand each
of these separately, then
we can study
combinations of graphs.
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Time
(s)
Displacement
(m)
Velocity
m.s
-1
Acceleration
m.s
-2
0 0 5 0
1 5 5 0
2 10 5 0
3 15 5 0
4 20 5 0
Object experiencing constant velocity
Car moving with constant velocity along road.
10
Drawing sketch graphs from these results.

Sketch graphs merely indicate shapes of graphs.
3 Graphs for constant velocity:
time
time time
d
i
s
p
l
a
c
e
m
e
n
t

v
e
l
o
c
i
t
y

a
c
c
e
l
e
r
a
t
i
o
n

Always draw time on x-axis.
Velocity - time graphs
11
t(s) s(m) v(m.s
-1
)

a(m.s
-2
)
0 0 0 2
1 1 2 2
2 4 4 2
3 9 6 2
4 16 8 2
Uniform + acceleration (velocity increasing)
Car moving away from a robot.
12
Drawing 3 sketch graphs from these results.
Constant positive acceleration:
time
time time
d
i
s
p
l
a
c
e
m
e
n
t

v
e
l
o
c
i
t
y

a
c
c
e
l
e
r
a
t
i
o
n

13
Drawing 3 sketch graphs.
Graphs for constant negative acceleration:
time
time time
d
i
s
p
l
a
c
e
m
e
n
t

a
c
c
e
l
e
r
a
t
i
o
n

Car slowing down to stop at robot.
Drawing graphs
14
Gradients/slopes provide the following:
- Displacement/time = velocity
- Velocity/time = acceleration
Area under graph provides:
- Velocity/time = displacement
- Acceleration/time = change in
velocity
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Gradients are calculated as follows:
Gradient (or slope) = y i.e. velocity
x time
Area of rectangle = L x B

Area of triangle = b x h
Gradient of a graph
Area under velocity /time graph
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V
e
l
o
c
i
t
y

20
40
time
0 10
x
y
Gradient/slope =
y
x
= 40 20
10
= 2 ms
-2

Acceleration
Area under a velocity/time graph is displacement:

Area = area of triangle + area of rectangle
= x 10 x 20 + 10 x20
= 100 + 200
= 300 m displacement in 10 seconds.

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x/m
t/s
a
b
c
Consider this displacement/time graph:
What is happening in a, b, & c?
Discuss the gradients & areas for each section of
the graph. Ensure that you know how to calculate
gradients (or slopes), areas & what they mean
18
Sometimes it is difficult to accurately measure
the acceleration of an object.
However, it can be done using a ticker tape. A
ticker tape is a narrow, long piece of paper that
can be attached to an object/trolley while
running through a ticker timer. The ticker-timer
makes dots on the tape at regular time intervals
say 1/50 of a second.
If we study the dots we can establish if the
object is moving at constant velocity, constant +
acceleration or constant acceleration.
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Dynamics
trolleys, ticker
timers and ticker
tapes can be
used to measure
motion.
Timers produce a certain number of dots per second &
velocities and accelerations are measured from tapes. 20
Motion of trolley & tapes
Describe the kind of motion taking place in each
tape. Explain how you can deduce this from the
tape. Constant velocity with ticker tape
21
Calculating acceleration from ticker tape information.

A B C D
5 mm 12 mm
Direction of motion
f = 50 Hz
T = 1/f = 1/50 = 0.02 s
Period: T = time
between successive dots
v
AB
= Inst. velocity midway in time AB
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A B C D
5 mm 12 mm
v
1
v
2

v
1
=
0,005
/
0,02
= 0,25 m/s
v
2
=
0,012
/
0,02
= 0,60 m/s
a =
v
/
t
=
0,60 - 0,25
/
2 x 0.02
= 8,75 m/s
2


V
1
= ave V
AB
V
2
= ave V
CD
Acceleration with ticker tape
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