1 Answers

The momentum of a car moving at a constant…

Posted by: 582 views , ,

Uniform linear motion - Basic Physics Tutorials

Uniform linear motion - Basic Physi...
QuizTablet Videos

The momentum of a car moving at a constant speed in a circular track

  • A. Can be both positive and negative
  • B. Can be centripetal
  • C. Can be zero depending on its position in the track
  • D. Can be centrifugal




Be careful with this question, your understanding of the basic difference between a vector quantity (like velocity) and a scalar quantity (like speed) will make the difference.

A body may be travelling with constant speed in a circle, but this does not imply that the velocity is also constant. This is because velocity is a vector which in addition to magnitude, also depends on direction.

Now, as the body moves with constant speed IN A CIRCLE, its velocity will not be constant, but will be changing as the direction of the body changes.

However, because momentum is simply another vector which can be calculated as = mass X change in velocity, the only condition for a zero momentum is if the velocity is constant, but fortunately we have a changing velocity.

RELATED!  An object moves in a circular path of radius 0.5m...

Hence, the momentum for a body travelling in a circle can never be zero but may be negative or positive depending on the current direction of the body.

Now for the right answer to the above question:

  1. Option A is correct. depending on the direction, a body moving in a circle will have either positive or negative momentum.
  2. Option B is incorrect. cannot be centripetal because the direction of movement is not away from the center but along the circumference of the circle.
  3. C is incorrect. can NEVER be zero as long as it moves in a circular path.
  4. D is not the correct answer. cannot be centrifugal because the direction of movement is not towards the center but along the circumference of the circle


You may please note these/this:

  • The velocity, momentum, and acceleration of a body moving in a circular path can never be zero.
  • This is because the direction of the body will always be changing, making its velocity to follow suit.

Use the questions and answers session to deal further on this topic…

You can also freely share this page with friends.

/ culled from 2019 JAMB-UTME physics question 37 /

Answer Question