Science & Mathematics » Physics » Is it possible for an object to have zero average velocity over a given interval of time, yet still be accelerating during the interval?

# Is it possible for an object to have zero average velocity over a given interval of time, yet still be accelerating during the interval?

I know the answer is yes but I don't know why. Can someone explain this to me in simple terms?

• Because velocity includes both speed and direction. A horse on a merry-go-round is in a constant state of acceleration while the ride is in operation, yet if the horse stops at the same place it has ex=experienced zero average acceleration.
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• average velocity = displacement / time
if the object returns to its starting point (displacement = 0) it has zero average velocity
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• Yes, easily.

A pendulum is probably the simplest example. It stops and reverses motion at the end of each swing, then accelerates until it reaches it's lowest point.

Over any number of complete cycles, the average velocity is zero.
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• Thanks, That's what I thought.
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