Chapter 1- Kinematics Regents Physics
One-Dimensional Motion
1. DISTANCE
Distance is the total length of a path that an object travels. Distance is a scalar quantity which means it only has magnitude. Therefore, if a problem tells you direction and asks for distance, disregard the directions.
For example:
Jenny walks 30 meters north, 40 meters south, and 20 meters north. Determine the distance travelled by Jenny.


A jet takes off from Florida and flies 100 miles north and then 400 miles west. Determine the total distance travelled by the jet.


A speed boat takes off 400 feet to the north and then travels 600 feet back to the south. Determine the distance travelled by the boat.

2. DISPLACEMENT
On the other hand, displacement is the change in the position of an object described by a vector that begins at the initial position of the object and ends at its final position (shortest way from start point to finish). Displacement has both magnitude and direction. Therefore, if a problem asks for displacement , both magnitude and direction must be taken into account.
115252569850


For example:
Jenny walks 30 meters north, 40 meters south, and 20 meters north. Determine the dis placement travelled by Jenny.


The Port Jefferson ferry travels 20 miles north to Connecticut and then 20 miles south to Long Island. What is the displacement of the ferry?


Many displacement problems will require the use of the Pythagorean Theorem.
For example:
An airplane travels 400 meters north and then 300 meters east. Determine the displacement of the airplane. (Picture may help!)




The ci ty bus travels 5 blocks east, 7 blocks south, and then 2 blocks west. Determine the displacement of the bus. ( Draw a p icture!!!)