Scalars can be added algebraically. However, vectors do not obey the ordinary laws of algebra. This is because vectors possess both magnitude and direction. Vectors are added geometrically. The process of adding two or more vectors is known as addition or composition of vectors. When two or more vectors are added, the result is a single vector called the resultant vector.
The resultant of two or more vectors is that single vector which alone produces the same effect as that produced by the two individual vectors.
Three laws have been evolved for the addition of vectors:
- Triangle law of vectors for addition of two vectors.
- Parallelogram law of vectors for addition of two vectors.
- Polygon law of vectors for addition of more than two vectors.