The difference between speed and velocity is one of the most interesting things in physics. The difference between speed and speed is a very common question in board exams as well as competitive entrance exams like JEE and NEET. We use the terms speed and velocity in everyday use, but it doesn’t mean much difference to us.
But when it comes to mathematics and physics, the two terms are completely different from each other. The difference between speed and velocity is given here in the form of a table to help students better understand the concepts of speed and velocity.
What is Speed?
By definition, velocity is nothing but the rate of change in the distance covered by an object per unit time. In other words, velocity is the movement of time in the path of an object.
That is, it is not necessary to consider the direction of motion of the object to define speed. Therefore speed is a digital quantity. That is, it has only magnitude but no direction.
For example, a Bugatti Veyron traveling at 160 mph could easily go from 0 to 100 mph and even 180 mph before reaching 140 mph.
- Speed is a scalar quantity.
- Speed is path-dependent.
- The magnitude of speed is always positive.
- Speed is always symmetric, etc.
What is Velocity?
Definition, velocity is nothing but the rate of change of motion covered by an object per unit time. In other words, velocity is the rate of change of time as well as the direction of a moving object.
That is, to define speed, the direction of motion of the object must be taken into account. Therefore velocity is a vector quantity. That is, it has magnitude and direction.
For example, a high-speed bullet train travels at 150 km/h. But then its maximum speed will be 150 kilometers per hour, exactly.
- Velocity is a vector quantity.
- Velocity is path-independent.
- The magnitude of velocity can be negative, positive, or, zero.
- Velocity is anti-symmetric, etc.
Difference between Speed and Velocity
|Speed is the rate of change of distance per unit time.||Velocity is the rate of change of displacement per unit time.|
|Speed defines how fast an object is moving.||Velocity defines how fast an object is moving but in which direction.|
|It is a scalar quantity.||It is a vector quantity.|
|Speed defines the rate of change of motion of an object.||Velocity defines the rate of change of motion as well as the position of an object.|
|The S.I unit of speed is m/s.||The S.I. unit of speed is m/s.|
|The dimension of speed is LT-1.||The dimension of velocity is LT-1.|
|The formula for Speed is Speed = Distance/Time.||The formula for velocity is Velocity = Displacement/Time.|