What Is the Physics Equation for Speed?


Quick Answer

The speed of an object is equal to the distance it travels divided by the amount of time it takes to travel the distance. This actually measures the average speed; instantaneous speed is the speed of an object at a given instant (as the time period approaches zero).

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Full Answer

An everyday example of the difference between speed and instantaneous speed is driving in a car; while the speed calculated using the formula "speed equals distance divided by time" may be 30 miles per hour, there may have been instances where the car was traveling at 60 miles per hour. Speed does not take the direction of motion into account.

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