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Key Terms

acceleration vector
instantaneous acceleration found by taking the derivative of the velocity function with respect to time in unit vector notation
angular frequency
ω,ω, rate of change of an angle with which an object that is moving on a circular path
centripetal acceleration
component of acceleration of an object moving in a circle that is directed radially inward toward the center of the circle
displacement vector
vector from the initial position to a final position on a trajectory of a particle
position vector
vector from the origin of a chosen coordinate system to the position of a particle in two- or three-dimensional space
projectile motion
motion of an object subject only to the acceleration of gravity
maximum horizontal distance a projectile travels
reference frame
coordinate system in which the position, velocity, and acceleration of an object at rest or moving is measured
relative velocity
velocity of an object as observed from a particular reference frame, or the velocity of one reference frame with respect to another reference frame
tangential acceleration
magnitude of which is the time rate of change of speed. Its direction is tangent to the circle.
time of flight
elapsed time a projectile is in the air
total acceleration
vector sum of centripetal and tangential accelerations
path of a projectile through the air
velocity vector
vector that gives the instantaneous speed and direction of a particle; tangent to the trajectory
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