Is displacement a vector?


Quick Answer

Displacement is a vector. Scientists and mathematicians define vector as a quantity that is reliant upon direction. A vector is described or mathematically calculated by using magnitude and direction.

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Full Answer

A scalar is described or mathematically calculated by using only magnitude. Distance, a scalar quantity refers to the interval between two points. Displacement is defined as the vector distance. It is important when describing an object's motion, which can be one, two or three dimensional. For one-dimensional motions, one coordinate is used. A two-dimensional motion may involve two polar or Cartesian coordinates. For a three-dimensional motion, three spherical polar or Cartesian coordinates are used.

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