Physics Review Question

Unit: mechanics
Year: 1995 Question#: 05
Question: Which term represents a vector quantity?

(1 ) work
(2 ) power
(3 ) force
(4 ) distance

What is this question really asking?

Explanation by: Christine A

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Answer 1


Work is not a vector quantity; rather, it is a scalar quantity. This is because work must be described only by a number with appropriate units; it does not need to include a direction. For example, a measure of work is 5 Joules, NOT 5 Joules North. return to top

Answer 2


Power is a scalar quantity, not a vector quantity. This means that it is described only by a number with appropriate units; not a number with units AND a direction. return to top

Answer 3


Force is a vector quantity, because it must always be described by both a number with units and a direction; for example, force must be expressed as "30 N south" rather than simply "30 N." return to top

Answer 4


Distance is a scalar quantity, described merely by length of path, not the direction. To be a vector quantity, the measurement must include both magnitude AND direction. return to top

What's this question really asking?

Do you know what a vector quantity is (i.e. do you know how a vector quantity must be defined)? return to top

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