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written by Andrew Duffy
This applet simulates a boat crossing a river.  The user can set the speed at which the river flows, and the magnitude and direction of the boat's velocity.  The applet then displays the path taken by the boat.  It also calculates the velocity of the boat with respect to the river and the shore, as well as the time it takes for the boat to cross the river. Questions promoting conceptual understanding are provided at the bottom of the page.

Please note that this resource requires Java.
Subjects Levels Resource Types
Classical Mechanics
- Motion in Two Dimensions
- Relative Motion
- Lower Undergraduate
- High School
- Instructional Material
= Curriculum support
= Interactive Simulation
- Audio/Visual
= Movie/Animation
Intended Users Formats Ratings
- Educators
- Learners
- application/java
- text/html
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Access Rights:
Free access
© 1998 Andrew Duffy
crossing a river, relative velocity, water currents
Record Creator:
Metadata instance created March 2, 2006 by Jason Garman
Record Updated:
May 9, 2009 by Lyle Barbato
Last Update
when Cataloged:
September 9, 1998
ComPADRE is beta testing Citation Styles!

Record Link
AIP Format
A. Duffy, (1998), WWW Document, (
A. Duffy, Relative Velocity, (1998), <>.
APA Format
Duffy, A. (1998, September 9). Relative Velocity. Retrieved September 15, 2019, from
Chicago Format
Duffy, Andrew. Relative Velocity. September 9, 1998. (accessed 15 September 2019).
MLA Format
Duffy, Andrew. Relative Velocity. 1998. 9 Sep. 1998. 15 Sep. 2019 <>.
BibTeX Export Format
@misc{ Author = "Andrew Duffy", Title = {Relative Velocity}, Volume = {2019}, Number = {15 September 2019}, Month = {September 9, 1998}, Year = {1998} }
Refer Export Format

%A Andrew Duffy
%T Relative Velocity
%D September 9, 1998
%O application/java

EndNote Export Format

%0 Electronic Source
%A Duffy, Andrew
%D September 9, 1998
%T Relative Velocity
%V 2019
%N 15 September 2019
%8 September 9, 1998
%9 application/java

Disclaimer: ComPADRE offers citation styles as a guide only. We cannot offer interpretations about citations as this is an automated procedure. Please refer to the style manuals in the Citation Source Information area for clarifications.

Citation Source Information

The AIP Style presented is based on information from the AIP Style Manual.

The APA Style presented is based on information from APA Electronic References.

The Chicago Style presented is based on information from Examples of Chicago-Style Documentation.

The MLA Style presented is based on information from the MLA FAQ.

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