An object travels North at #6 m/s# for #2 s# and then travels South at #1 m/s# for #4 s#. What are the object's average speed and velocity?

1 Answer
Jul 10, 2016

The average velocity is #4/3# m/s toward the North.


The average speed of the object is simply the total displacement divided by the total time. Since the object first moves North for two seconds at 6 m/s, the object is displaced 12 meters to the North.

After moving South at 1 m/s for 4 seconds, the object now has a total displacement of 8 meters to the North.

The average speed then is:
#8/6 = 4/3# m/s

And the velocity is simply the average speed in the direction traveled, North.