How to calculate a distance traveled

Formula speed

We provide you with the formula for calculating the speed in this article. We also show you the difference between a uniform movement and a uniformly accelerated movement. This article belongs to the field of physics or mechanics.

First of all, a distinction must be made between the type of movement present in order to then be able to calculate the speed. This is a typical task in the field of physics. We now start with the uniform movement and then look at the uniformly accelerated movement.

What is uniform motion?

Uniform motion has the following properties:

  • The speed of the object is always the same
  • The acceleration a is zero (a = 0), i.e. the object is neither decelerated nor does it get faster


Or expressed as an example: You are driving on a road at 100 km / h. As long as you really drive the 100km / h, this is a uniform movement. If the speed changes, however, you no longer have a uniform movement.

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Formula: speed of uniform movement

The formula of uniform motion sets the information Distance, speed, time and starting distance in relation to each other. The following is now the general formula for calculating the speed in physics for uniform movements, as well as the meaning of the symbols. Then we will provide you with some explanations and examples.

Uniform motion formula:

  • s = v t + s0
  • "s" is the distance in meters [m]
  • "v" is the speed in meters per second [m / s]
  • "t" is the time in seconds [s]
  • "s0"is the starting distance in meters [m]

In very many cases the starting path does not exist. This simplifies the formula too

s = v · t.

The evenly accelerated movement

Now let's take care of the uniformly accelerated motion from the point of view of physics. This has the following properties:

  • The speed of the object changes, becomes either faster or slower
  • This means that the acceleration - usually denoted by "a" - is not equal to zero
  • The acceleration is always constant with a uniformly accelerated movement


So again: the acceleration is always the same. Example: a = 5m / s2. This means that the object is moving at 5m / s2 accelerated. "A" does not change during the movement, otherwise the acceleration would no longer be uniform.

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Formula: Evenly accelerated movement

There are three laws of uniformly accelerated motion. These laws provide information too Distance, acceleration, time, initial speed and initial distance. The calculation formulas are now covered.

Formula uniformly accelerated movement (distance-time law):

  • s = 0.5 a t2 + vO · T + s0
  • "s" is the distance in meters [m]
  • "a" is the acceleration in meters per second square [m / s2]
  • "t" is the time in seconds [s]
  • "s0"is the starting path [m]


If the movement starts from a standstill and from the starting point, the formula simplifies to: s = 0.5 a t2

Formula uniformly accelerated movement (speed-time law):

  • v = a t + v0
  • "v" is the speed in meters per second [m / s]
  • "a" is the acceleration in meters per second square [m / s2 ]
  • "t" is the time in seconds [s]
  • "v0"is the initial speed in meters per second [m / s]

If the movement begins without a start speed, the formula is simplified to: v = a t
Formula uniformly accelerated movement (acceleration-time law):

  • a = constant
  • "a" is the acceleration in meters per second square [m / s2]

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