Average acceleration formula

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Average acceleration is the rate of change of average velocity. So, it is the ratio of average velocity over time interval.

                   Average acceleration = Change in velocity/change in time.

          Or,              a(av) = Δv/Δt

          Or,              a(av) = (v2 – v1)/ (t2 – t1)

Where,
          a(av) = average acceleration

          Δv = change in velocity

          Δt = change in time

          V2 = final velocity

          V1 = initial velocity

          t2 = final time

          t1 = initial time

The unit of acceleration and average acceleration is same that is m/s.


Example: A car accelerates with an initial velocity of 20 m/s for 10s then 40 m/s for 8s finally for 30 m/s for 16s. Calculate the average acceleration?

Solution: Given that,
          Three velocities 20 m/s, 40 m/s and 30 m/s
And three times 10 sec, 8 sec and 16 sec.
So, total velocity = 20 + 40 + 30 = 90 m/s
And total time = 10 + 8 + 16 = 34 sec
Therefore, Average acceleration = Δv/Δt = 90/34 = 2.647 m/s^2
 

Example: If a car accelerates from 10 m/s to 30 m/s in 4 seconds, what is the car's average acceleration? 

Solution: Given that,
          Initial velocity = 10 m/s
          Final velocity = 30 m/s
                   Time = 4 sec
So that,      Average acceleration = (vf – vi)/t
                                                = (30 – 10)/4 = 20/4 = 5 sec.


 

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