Speed is an example of a compound measure, which is one that involves more than one unit of measurement.
Speed is a measure of distance (e.g. miles, km) in relation to time (e.g. hours, minutes) and can be measured in mph (miles per hour), km/h etc.
Throughout a typical journey, speed varies. It stays constant, then it may increase or decrease.
We calculate the average speed from the total distance travelled and the total time taken.
Average speed = total distance travelled ÷ total time taken
A train leaves London at 1130 and arrives in Portsmouth at 1220.
The distance between the two stations is 110 km.
Find the average speed in km/h.
First we must state the time taken in hours, not in minutes.
Time taken = 50 minutes = 5/6 hour
Average Speed = total distance ÷ total time
= 110 ÷ 5/6
= 110 × 6/5
= 132 km/h
To test and consolidate your knowledge we'll apply it by answering word problems.