Uniform Circular Motion
Introduction to the Dynamics of Uniform Circular Motion
Up to this point we have examined Newton's Laws as they apply to linear motion. In other words we have examined how forces change the magnitude of the velocity of an object, but not how forces affect an object's direction. Because velocity is a vector quantity, with both speed and direction, when an object moves with uniform speed in a circular path, its velocity therefore undergoes constant change, meaning it experiences acceleration. We can consequently analyze uniform circular motion using Newton's Laws.