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Post by chibean » Tue Jan 07, 2020 9:15 pm

Can you explain when and how to use the different vector equations? Mainly I would like clarification on how to determine the x and y components on a vector, and how to add and subtract vectors?
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Re: Vectors

Post by NS_Tutor_Mathias » Wed Jan 08, 2020 12:59 am

If provided on a graph, you can simply read off the x and y components. However far the vector goes on the x-axis alone, that is it's x-component. Likewise for y.

If you are only provided with an angle, you'll need to use trigonometric identities to decompose the vector into a horizontal and vertical component. I've attached an image that should walk you through this:
(121.63 KiB) Not downloaded yet

Once you have horizontal and vertical components you can just add (or subtract) all the vertical and horizontal components to your heart's desire. Don't overthink it: A (3, 2) vector plus a (4, 1) vector gives a (7, 3) vector.

(As a small aside, I wrote 'launch vector' and 'launch angle' - of course, this works for any kind of angle, whether things are being launched or not. I had a little bit of kinematics on the brain when I made this just a minute ago :) )
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