# Confusing Vectors Word Problem

• Mar 1st 2014, 01:42 PM
sakonpure6
Confusing Vectors Word Problem
Attachment 30270
For problem #15, I do not under stand how to interpret a diagram from the information given. To my understanding this is how the diagram should look like Attachment 30271
however it is the hypotenuse of the triangle that represents the women's speed in still water, why????

Also, it says she wants to go directly opposite from her starting point, so the horizontal part of the triangle should represent her speed, am I right?

• Mar 1st 2014, 02:00 PM
romsek
Re: Confusing Vectors Word Problem
her speed along $\vec{r}$ is 3 km/s. Not her horizontal velocity. You have to solve for that once you figure out the angle she needs to swim at to counter the current's velocity vector.
• Mar 1st 2014, 02:16 PM
sakonpure6
Re: Confusing Vectors Word Problem
Okay, and I don't see how calculating theta in my diagram is the direction to counter the current ? can you explain that? Thank you
• Mar 1st 2014, 02:23 PM
romsek
Re: Confusing Vectors Word Problem
pick a coordinate system. Usually in navigation problems north is positive y, east is positive x. Orient the river on the y axis.

Now write down the vectors for the river current, her swimming velocity, and the x and y components of her swimming velocity in terms of theta.

Now adjust theta so that the sum of her y component of velocity and the current velocity is zero.

Use that theta to compute horizontal velocity.

Attachment 30272