Math CentralQuandaries & Queries


Question from san, a student:

An automobile, travelling at 80km/h, is towing a trailer. The wheels of the trailer are 40cm in diameter. Through what angle does the tire turn in 60second? Please state your answer in radians and degrees. Thanks alot.


If the linear velocity is v and the angular velocity is ω and the radius of the wheel is r, then these are related in the formula v = rω where ω is in radians per unit time.

You have the linear velocity (80 000 m/hr), you have the radius (0.20 m) and you want to know the angular velocity ω.

So plug in the values and then just convert units from angle per hour to angle per minute.

Hope this helps,
Stephen La Rocque.

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