Problem 3CQ

Can you drive your car in such a way that the distance it covers is (a) greater than, (b) equal to, or (c) less than the magnitude of its displacement? In each case, give an example if your answer is yes, explain why not if your answer is no.

Solution 3CQ

Part (a)

Step 1 of 3:

The distance is the length between the two points considered and the displacement is the shortest distance between the two points with a proper direction. The distance is a scalar and the displacement is a vector quantity. We are going to check the distance is greater than its displacement.

Consider a person starts from the point O and reaches C and then A.

Now the distance traveled by the person is OC+ CA.

The magnitude of displacement is the shortest distance, that is OA. The distance traveled is greater than the displacement here.

OC + CA > OA

Part (b)