Vectors and Scalars

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In physics, the mathematical quantities which are used to describe the motion of any object can be divided into two categories, Vector and Scalar.


The quantity which has both magnitude and direction is called Vector quantity.
Examples of vector quantities are displacement, velocity, acceleration, force and electric field etc.
Vector quantity may be represented geometrically by an arrow of length proportional to its magnitude, pointing in the assigned direction. For example;
Vectors must have the same unit in order for them to be added or subtracted.
The negative of a vector has the same magnitude but opposite direction.
And Subtraction of a vector is defined by adding a negative vector:
We cannot use the simple rule of algebra to add, subtract, multiply or divide in vector quantities, but we can use rules of trigonometry and geometry to add, subtract, multiply or divide in vector quantities.
Vector quantities are represented by a straight line with arrow head pointing the direction of vector or terminal point of vector.


The quantity which has only magnitude not the direction is called Scalar quantity.
Work, energy, electric flux, volume, refractive index, time, speed, electric potential, potential difference, viscosity, density, power, mass, distance, temperature, electric charge, electric flux etc.
We can use the simple rule of algebra to add, subtract, multiply or divide in scalar quantities.

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