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Quantitative Aptitude

Time and Distance

Importance in CAT
Time and Distance is broadly classified under Arithmetic. It is one of the more important chapters with respect to CAT as well as other MBA entrances. Over the years, average weightage of Time and Distance in CAT has been 10%

Key Concepts
Relation amongst time, speed and distance Average speed Acceleration/deceleration Relative speed Concept of Clock gaining and losing time Speed-time graphs.

Types of Questions frequently asked


Calculation of average speed/time/total distance Problems using concept of relative speed -- Relative speed in linear motion -- Relative speed in circular motion -- Problems related to trains -- Problems related to speed of boats and streams -- Questions based on race (contest of speed) Clocks -- Problems related to motion of minute hand and second hand in clocks -- Problems based on gaining and losing time Problems based on escalators Problems based on graphs

Important formulae/properties Time and Distance


Speed =
distance time speed time total distance travelled = total time taken

Acceleration = Average speed

Savg =
Savg =

1 1 1 1 : : : : s1 s2 s3 s

(time for different distances is not constant)


(time constant)

s1 :s2 : :s

Relative Speed: For two bodies A and B are travelling with speeds a and b resp. -- moving towards each other, relative speed is a + b -- moving away from each other, relative speed is |a b|

Important formulae/properties Time and Distance


If A and B are moving on a circular track, time taken to meet for the 1st time -- when moving in the same direction = circumference/(|a b|) -- when moving in opposite direction = circumference/(a + b) Race If A beats B by x minutes or y metres, then A can cover y metres in x minutes. Clocks: The time taken by the minute hand to gain x minute spaces over the hour hand = (60/55)x = (12/11)x minutes -- Speed of minute hand = 6 per minute -- Speed of hour hand = per minute -- Relative speed of minute hand w.r.t hour hand = 5 per min

Important formulae/properties Time and Distance


-- The hands of the clock make an angle of 90 twenty two times in a period of 12 hours -- They also make an angle of 0 eleven times and 180 eleven times in a span of 12 hours Speed Time Graphs -- If a speed time graph is a straight line horizontal to the x-axis, then speed remains constant with increasing time. -- If a speed time graph is a straight line making a certain slope with the axes, then the graph shows an accelerating/decelerating graph The graph is accelerating one if speed increases with time and is a decelerating one if speed decreases with time.

Examples Average Speed


If Mike covers a distance of 300 km in three stretches of 100 km each with speeds 30 km/hr, 60 km/hr and 80 km/hr respectively, then what is the average speed of Mike throughout the journey? Solution: It is given that Mike travels 100 km each with varying speeds. Thus time to travel each stretch of 100 km is different.

Let us recall the formula for average speed when time is not constant Savg = 1 1 1 1
s1 s2 s3

: : : :s

Savg =

3
1 1 1 : : 30 60 80

3306080 8060 : 3080 : 6030

= 48

Hence, Savg = 48 km/hr

Examples Relative Speed in Linear Motion


Ram and Shyam run a race between points A and B, 5 km apart. Ram starts at 9 a.m. from A at a speed of 5 km/hr, reaches B, and returns to A at the same speed. Shyam starts at 9:45 a.m. from A at a speed of 10 km/hr, reaches B and comes back to A at the same speed. At what time do Ram and Shyam first meet each other? Solution: The distance between points A and B is 5 km. Ram starts at 9 a.m. from A at a speed of 5 km/hr. So, he reaches B at 10:00 a.m. When Ram reaches B (i.e. at 10.00 a.m., or 15 minutes after Shyam started from A), Shyam (running at a speed of 10 km/hr.) is 15/60 10 = 2.5 km away from A. ( distance = speed time) At this point, Ram and Shyam are moving towards each other and hence their relative speed is (10 + 5) = 15 km/hour. Both of them cover a total of 2.5 km at a combined speed of 15 km/hr. Recall that time required = distance travelled/speed Time taken to cover 2.5 km = 2.5 60/15 = 10 minutes. Thus Ram and Shyam meet at 10:10 a.m. for the first time.

Examples Relative Speed - Trains


Two super-fast trains, which travel at speeds of 120 km/hr and 150 km/hr, left the Beijing Railway Station at exactly the same time, and were headed in the same direction. Thirty minutes later, another super-fast train left Beijing Station in the same direction as the previous two. It crossed the faster train an hour and a half after it crossed the slower one. Find the third trains speed. (Note: Assume all trains to be of negligible length.) Solution: The speeds of the two trains are 120 km/hr. and 150 km/hr.

Hence, in 30 minutes they will each travel 60 km and 75 km respectively.


Assume that the speed of the third train is u km/hr. Hence, in 30 minutes, the relative distance between the third train and the slower train will be 60 km; and that between the faster train and the third train will be 75 km. Since, Relative Speed =
Relative Distance Time

Time =

Relative distance Relative speed

Assume that the time needed for the third train to cross the slower train is x km/hr. contd.

Examples Relative Speed - Trains


=
60 ;120 60

Thus, 120 = Also, the third train crosses the second train (faster one) 1.5 hours after it crosses the slower train. 150 = 150 =
75 :1.5 75
60 :1.5 120

75 ;120 60:1.5 ;120

75;9000 1.5;120

150 1.5 120 = 75 9000 1.52 420 + 27000 = 0 2 280 + 18000 = 0 100 180 = 0 = 100 or = 180 Since the third train is faster than both the other trains, its speed must be 180 km/hr.

Examples Relative Speed Boat and Stream


A boat goes 30 km upstream and 44 km downstream in 10 hours. In 13 hours, it can go 40 km upstream and 55 km down-stream. The speed of stream is: Solution: Assume that the speed of the boat in still water is x km/hour and the speed of the stream is u km/hour. While going upstream, the boat moves against the stream and hence the resultant relative speed is (x u) km/hour. Similarly, while going downstream, the relative speed is (x + u) km/hour. The boat goes 30 km upstream and 44 km downstream in 10 hours. Suppose that the time it takes to travel 30 km upstream is t1

( ) =

30 1

and + =

44 10 1

Similarly, if t2 is the time for which the boat travels upstream in the second case, then contd.

Examples Relative Speed Boat and Stream


( ) =
40 2

and + = 13

55

Comparing the R.H.S. of the two upstream equations, we can get a relation between t1 and t2
1 2

3 4

2 =
55

41 3

(1)

Comparing the R.H.S. of the two downstream equations, we get


44 10 2

= 13

This on further simplification gives 4t2 5t1 = 2 Substituting the value of t2 from (1) in the equation above, we get
161 3

51 = 2 1 = 6 hours. (x u) = 5 and (x + u) = 11 On solving the two above obtained equations for u, we get u = 3 km/hour. Thus, the speed of the stream is 3 km/hour.

Examples Relative Speed in Circular Motion and Race Two runners are running on a circular track of radius 14 metres. When the two
runners start running simultaneously in the same direction, they meet each other every 22 seconds. When they start running simultaneously in opposite directions, they meet each other every 10 seconds. Now, the two runners run on a straight 100 metre track in the same direction. If the runners run at the same speed as before, then how much head-start (in metres) must the faster runner give the slower one, so that they both reach the finish line together?

Solution: Since the radius of the circular track is 14 metres, its circumference = 2 14 = 88 7 Let the speeds of the faster and slower runners be SF and SS respectively. Now, when they run in the same direction, they meet every 22 seconds. Hence,
22

Relative speed, =

88 22

=4

( relative speed =

circumference )

(i)

When they run in opposite directions, they meet every 10 seconds. Hence, Relative speed, + =
88 10

= 8.8 relative speed =

circumference :

(ii) contd.

Examples Relative Speed in Circular Motion and Race


Solving equation (i) and (ii) simultaneously, we get, SF = 12.8/2 = 6.4 SS = 8.8 6.4 = 2.4 Now, we move on to the second part of the question. Let x be the head-start that the faster runner gives the slower one. Once the slower runner is ahead of the faster one by x metres, the time for which the two runners run before reaching the finish will be the same. Hence,

=
2.4 6.4 2.4 6.4 100

Distance covered by the slower runner after he is given the head start Distance covered by the faster runner

100; 100 100 2.4 6.4

=1

=1
.

4 6.4

= .

Examples Race
A hare and a turtle decided to race each other, the race beginning at an oak tree and finishing at a pine tree. The turtles speed was only half of that of the hare. However, the hare got caught cheating and was forced to hop back to the oak tree and start again, after it had already covered 2/3rd of the total distance. The turtle, slow but steady and honest, won the race by 8 minutes. How long did the hare take to complete the race? Solution: Let the total distance from the oak tree to the pine tree be d kilometres. Let the hares speed be x km/min; so the turtles speed = x/2 km/min. Hence, the hare ran 2d/3 kilometres, got caught cheating, then ran back another 2d/3 km to the oak tree; then finally ran d km from the oak to the pine tree. Total distance covered by the hare =
2 3

2 3

+ =
7 3

7 3 7 3

Time taken by the hare to complete the race =

minutes contd.

Examples Race
Time taken by the turtle to complete the race = =
2

Since the turtle beat the hare by 8 minutes, hence (Time taken by the hare to complete the race) (Time taken by the turtle to complete the race) = 8
7 3

7 3

2 = =8

1 3

= 24 minutes

= = =

Examples Clocks Angle between hour hand and minute hand


A man on his way to dinner shortly after 6:00 p.m. observes that the hands of his watch form an angle of 110. Returning before 7:00 p.m. he notices that again the hands of his watch form an angle of 110. The number of minutes that he has been away is: Solution: When the hour hand and minute hand form an angle of 110, x minutes after 6:00 pm, we have two possibilities 1. The minute hand is behind the hour hand. The speed of the minute hand is 6 per minute and the speed of the hour hand is 0.5 per minute. Initial distance between the hour and the minute hands at 6:00 pm is 180 (180 + 0.5x) (6x) = 110 180 5.5x = 110 x 12.72 minutes 12 minutes 43 seconds.

contd.

Examples Clocks Angle between hour hand and minute hand


2. The minute hand is ahead of the hour hand. 6x (180 + 0.5x) = 110 5.5x 180 = 110 x 52.72 minutes 52 minutes 43 seconds

The man leaves at 06:12:43 pm and returns at 06:52:43 pm He is away for 40 minutes.

Examples Clocks Gaining and Losing Time


Sangeeta and Swati bought two wristwatches from Jamshedpur Electronics at 11.40 a.m. IST. After purchasing they found that when 60 minutes elapses on a correct clock (IST), Sangeetas wristwatch registers 62 minutes whereas Swatis wristwatch registers 56 minutes. Later in the day Sangeetas wristwatch reads 10 p.m., then the time on Swatis wristwatch is:

Solution: It was 11.40 a.m. when Sangeeta and Swati bought the watches. According to Sangeetas watch, it was now 10 p.m.; that is, her watch has shown time elapsing by 10 hours, 20 minutes (= 620 minutes).
It is given that when the actual time elapses by 60 minutes, Sangeetas watch shows time elapsing by 62 minutes. Hence, Time on Sangeetas watch Actual time 62 minutes --------------> 60 minutes 620 minutes --------------> 600 minutes contd.

Examples Clocks Gaining and Losing Time


It is given that when the actual time elapses by 60 minutes, Swatis watch shows time elapsing by 56 minutes. Hence, Time on Swatis watch Actual time 56 minutes --------------> 60 minutes 560 minutes --------------> 600 minutes Hence, the time on Swatis watch elapsed by (600 56)/60 = 560 minutes Hence, the time on her watch is 11.40 a.m. + (9 hrs. 20 mins) = 9.00 p.m.

Examples Clocks Relative Speed


At what time between 5 oclock and 6 oclock will the hands of a watch be at right angles? Solution: At 5 oclock, the angle between the minute hand and the hour hand is 150 degrees. The minute hand has to gain 150 90 = 60 over the hour hand to make a right angle with it. Time =
60
1 52

120 min 11

= 10

10 11

min

This means that the hands of the watch will at right angles for the first time at 5:10:54.54 p.m. The minute and hour hands will also form a right angle when the minute hand gains 150 + 90 = 240 degrees over the hour hand.

Time =

240 52
1

480 min 11

= 43

7 11

min

This means that the hands of the watch will at right angles for the second time at 5:43:38.18 p.m.

Examples - Escalators
Shyam and Yom walk up an escalator. The escalator moves at a constant speed. Shyam takes three steps for every two of Yom's steps. Shyam gets to the top of the escalator after having taken 25 steps. While Yom (because his slower pace lets the escalator do a little more of the work) takes only 20 steps to reach the top. If the escalator were turned off, how many steps would they have to take to walk up? Solution: Assume that Shyam takes 3 steps and Yom takes 2 steps in 6 seconds and let the escalator moves up by x steps per second. Shyam takes 6/3 = 2 seconds for a step and Yom takes 6/2 = 3 seconds for a step Shyam took 25 2 = 50 seconds to go up Height of the stairway = (25 + 50x) steps Yom took 20 3 = 60 seconds to go up Similarly, in Yom's case, the height of the stairway = (20 + 60x) steps As both of them reached the top of the escalator together, 20 + 60x = 25 + 50x x = 1/2 If the escalator was turned off, they would have to take (20 + 60 1/2) = 50 steps

Speed Time Graphs


Assume that speed is defined on the y-axis and time is defined on the x-axis. The red line depicts a graph of constant speed.

In this case, the red line depicts a graph wherein the speed is increasing at a constant rate i.e. The acceleration is uniform.

In this case, the red line depicts a graph wherein the speed is decreasing at a constant rate i.e. The deceleration is uniform.

Speed Time Graphs


The red curve in this case is a parabolic curve which shows that the increase in speed is non uniform but the acceleration is uniform.

The red curve in this case is a parabolic curve which shows that the decrease in speed is non uniform but the deceleration is uniform.