# Intro to Physics Part 3: Distance and Displacement.

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Intro to Physics Part 3: Distance and Displacement

Framing Questions What is the difference between distance and displacement? What are the symbols for each of these? What are the formulas for finding each of these?

Distance, In Distance measures the total length of a journey along every twist and turn of a path. If the path travelled is not straight, you have to measure each segment of the path and add them together. Distance is a scalar quantity, so we give: – A magnitude and unit – No direction The standard unit for measuring distance is m.

Distance, in Symbols: – Distance = d – Initial distance (most times this is the origin) = d i – Final distance (end point – from origin) = d f Formula: – Example: – The car drive from my home to the school is 19.7km.

Displacement, in Displacement describes how much an object’s position has changed. If an object ends up back where it started its displacement is zero, even if it traveled a long distance. Displacement is a vector quantity, so we give: – A magnitude and unit – A direction The standard unit for displacement is m.

Displacement, in Symbols: – Displacement = – Initial displacement (from starting point) = – Final displacement (from starting point) = – Always measure displacement from the final point in a straight line back to the starting point. Formula: Example: – When I drove my car to school from my house, it was displaced a total of 13km N45°W

Practice Problems

Time Intervals Calculating the time interval is similar to calculating displacement. Find the initial time: t i Find the final time: t f The change in time is :