Linear Velocity, Types of Velocity, Linear Velocity Formula, Linear Velocity Units (For CBSE, ICSE, IAS, NET, NRA 2022)

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Linear Velocity

About Velocity

  • Velocity is a rate of change of the position of an object within a certain time range.
  • When the object moves along the straight path, the velocity associated with it is termed as linear velocity.
  • It is given as the ratio of distance covered to time. Denoted using V or Vl and measure using SI unit m/s. It is a vector quantity.
  • Imagine driving down the road and looking down at the dashboard. The speedometer says the car is traveling at a speed of 65 miles per hour. The speed of 65 miles per hour is the velocity. It is the rate of change of miles with respect to hours.

Types of Velocity

  • There are two different types of velocity:
    • Angular velocity
    • Linear velocity

Linear Velocity

  • Linear velocity is the measure of “the rate of change of displacement with respect to time when the object moves along a straight path.” It is a vector quantity. Dimension formula of linear velocity is
  • Any object that moves has a linear velocity.
  • Angular velocity only applies to objects moving along a circular path.
  • For instance, if a person goes for a walk, drive, run, or bike ride, there is linear velocity.
  • When this is the case, we say that the object is traveling with a constant linear velocity. This basically just says that the object՚s linear velocity is not changing. In other words, the linear velocity is constant.

Angular Velocity

  • It is the rate of change of the angular displacement over time.
  • Linear and angular velocities are related to the speed of an object based on the perspective chosen.
  • Linear velocity is applied to an object that moves, whereas angular velocity applies to those that turn such as a wheel, the earth՚s revolution, or a spinning top.

Linear Velocity Formula

It depends on the distance travelled by an object with respect to time taken. The linear equation or the linear velocity formula is given by,


  • v = Linear velocity
  • x = distance covered
  • t = Time taken to cover the distance (x) .

Linear Velocity Units

SI unit meter per second or m/s

Angular Velocity Versus Linear Velocity

Angular Velocity Versus Linear Velocity
  • Anything that moves or turns in the circular direction has both linear velocity and angular velocity. The angular velocity is the ratio of the angle traversed to the amount of time it takes to traverse that angle.
  • Angular velocity gives an expression of angular displacement over time and can be expressed in radians or degrees. Angular velocity is determined with the above-mentioned equation.
  • For calculating the linear velocity from angular velocity, you can apply the formula, where

is expressed in radians/time,

r indicates the radius of the path taken.

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