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Boats and Streams - Aptitude Test Tricks,

Formulas & Shortcuts


 You will be given the speed of boat in still water and the speed of stream. You have to
find the time taken by boat to go upstream and downstream.
 You will be given the speed of boat to go up & down the stream, you will be asked to
find speed of boat in still water and speed of stream
 You will be given speed of boat in up and down stream and will be asked to find the
average speed of boat.
 You will be given the time taken by boat to reach a place in up and downstream and
will be asked to find the distance to the place

The key point here is you can solve any of these questions using the formulas and short cuts
given below.

1. Cyclist and wind: cyclist analogous to boat and wind analogous to stream
2. Swimmer and stream: swimmer analogous to boat

Basic Concepts of Questions on Boats and Streams

1. A boat is said to go downstream, if the boat goes in the direction of stream.


2. A boat is said to go upstream, if the boat goes opposite to the direction of stream.

Basic Formulas

1. If speed of boat in still water is b km/hr and speed of stream is s km/hr,


o Speed of boat in downstream = (b + s) km/hr , since the boat goes with the stream
of water.
o Speed of boat in upstream = (b - s) km/hr. The boat goes against the stream of
water and hence its speed gets reduced.

Shortcuts With Explanation

Scenario 1: Given a boat travels downstream with speed d km/hr and it travels with speed u
km/hr upstream. Find the speed of stream and speed of boat in still water.

Let speed of boat in still water be bkm/hr and speed of stream be skm/hr.
Then b + s = d and b – s = u.
Solving the 2 equations we get,
b = (d + u)/2
s = (d – u)/2

Scenario 2: A man can row a boat, certain distance downstream in td hours and returns the
same distance upstream in tu hours. If the speed of stream is s km/h, then the speed of boat in
still water is given by
We know distance = speed * time
Let the speed of boat be b km/hr
Case downstream:
d = (b + s) * td
Case upstream:
d = (b - s) * tu

=> (b + s) / (b - s) = tu / td

b = [(tu + td) / (tu - td)] * s

Scenario 3: A man can row in still water at b km/h. In a stream flowing at s km/h, if it takes
him t hours to row to a place and come back, then the distance between two places, d is given
by

Downstream: Let the time taken to go downstream be td


d = (b + s) * td

Upstream: Let the time taken to go upstream be tu


d = (b - s) * tu

td + tu = t
[d / (b + s)] + [d / (b - s)] = t
So, d = t * [(b2 - s2) / 2b]
OR
d = [t * (Speed to go downstream) * (Speed to go upstream)]/[2 * Speed of boat or man in
still water]

Scenario 4: A man can row in still water at b km/h. In a stream flowing at s km/h, if it takes t
hours more in upstream than to go downstream for the same distance, then the distance d is
given by

Time taken to go upstream = t + Time taken to go downstream


(d / (b - s)) = t + (d / (b + s))
=> d [ 2s / (b2 - s2 ] = t
So, d = t * [(b2 - s2) / 2s]
OR
d = [t * (Speed to go downstream) * (Speed to go upstream)] / [2 * Speed of still water]

Pipes and Cisterns - Aptitude Test Tricks,


Formulas & Concepts
Core Concepts

1. A pipe which fills up the tank is known as inlet.


2. A pipe which empties the tank is known as outlet.
3. A pipe takes x hours to fill up the tank. Then 1/x parts of the tank will be filled in 1 hour.
4. A pipe takes y hours to empty the tank. Then part emptied in 1 hour = 1/y
5. Pipe A can fill a tank n times as fast as another pipe B. This means: If slower pipe B takes x
min to fill up the empty tank,
then faster pipe A takes x/n min to fill up the empty tank. If they operate together, then part
of the tank that is filled up in 1 hour is (n + 1)/x

Important Formulas, Shortcuts with Explanation

Scenario 1: A tank has 2 inlet pipes A and B. Pipe A alone can fill up the tank in a hrs. Pipe
B alone can fill up the tank in b hrs. How much time will it take to fill up the tank, if both
pipes are opened together?

Let V be the volume of tank.


Pipe A can fill V/a parts of tank in 1hr.
Pipe B can fill V/b parts of tank in 1 hr.
If both pipes function together, let c hrs be the time taken to fill up tank.
That means, V/c parts of tank will be filled in 1 hr.
ie; V/a + V/b parts of tank will be filled in 1 hr.
V/a + V/b = V/c

c = ab/(a+b) hrs

Scenario 2: An inlet pipe takes x hours to fill up the tank. An outlet pipe takes y hours to
empty the tank. Then if both pipes are opened

1. If y > x, net part filled up in 1 hr = 1/x – 1/y


2. If x > y, net part emptied in 1 hr = 1/y – 1/x

Scenario 3: If there are n pipes to a tank which takes p1, p2, p3, p4, .. pn hours to fill up the
tank, when operating alone. Then if all pipes are opened together:

Part of the tank that is filled up in 1 hr =


Time taken to fill up the tank =

Scenario 4: If there are n pipes to a tank which takes p1, p2, p3,p4, .. pn hours to fill up the
tank, when operating alone. The tank also has an outlet pipe which takes p0 hours to empty
the tank. Then if all pipes are opened together:
Part of the tank that is filled up in 1 hr = [ -ve sign implies emptying the tank]

Scenario 5: A pipe can fill a tank in x hrs. Because of a leak at the bottom of tank, it takes y
hrs to fill up the tank. If the tank is full, how much time will it take to empty the full tank?

Time take to empty the tank = xy / (y – x) hours

Numbers – Aptitude Test Questions, Tricks


& Shortcuts
Important Formulas of Number System
Formulas of Number Series

1. 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 5 + … + n = n(n + 1)/2
2. (12 + 22 + 32 + ..... + n2) = n ( n + 1 ) (2n + 1) / 6
3. (13 + 23 + 33 + ..... + n3) = (n(n + 1)/ 2)2
4. Sum of first n odd numbers = n2
5. Sum of first n even numbers = n (n + 1)

Mathematical Formulas

1. (a + b)(a - b) = (a2 - b2)


2. (a + b)2 = (a2 + b2 + 2ab)
3. (a - b)2 = (a2 + b2 - 2ab)
4. (a + b + c)2 = a2 + b2 + c2 + 2(ab + bc + ca)
5. (a3 + b3) = (a + b)(a2 - ab + b2)
6. (a3 - b3) = (a - b)(a2 + ab + b2)
7. (a3 + b3 + c3 - 3abc) = (a + b + c)(a2 + b2 + c2 - ab - bc - ac)
8. When a + b + c = 0, then a3 + b3 + c3 = 3abc
9. (a + b)n = an + (nC1)an-1b + (nC2)an-2b2 + … + (nCn-1)abn-1 + bn

Shortcuts for number divisibility check

1. A number is divisible by 2, if its unit's digit is any of 0, 2, 4, 6, 8.


2. A number is divisible by 3, if the sum of its digits is divisible by 3.
3. A number is divisible by 4, if the number formed by the last two digits is divisible by 4.
4. A number is divisible by 5, if its unit's digit is either 0 or 5.
5. A number is divisible by 6, if it is divisible by both 2 and 3.
6. A number is divisible by 8, if the number formed by the last three digits of the given number
is divisible by 8.
7. A number is divisible by 9, if the sum of its digits is divisible by 9.
8. A number is divisible by 10, if it ends with 0.
9. A number is divisible by 11, if the difference of the sum of its digits at odd places and the
sum of its digits at even places, is either 0 or a number divisible by 11.
10. A number is divisible by 12, if it is divisible by both 4 and 3.
11. A number is divisible by 14, if it is divisible by 2 as well as 7.
12. Two numbers are said to be co-primes if their H.C.F. is 1. To find if a number, say y is
divisible by x, find m and n such that m * n = x and m and n are co-prime numbers. If y is
divisible by both m and n then it is divisible by x.

Shortcuts for 'recurring decimal to fraction' conversion

1. For recurring decimals of format '0.abababab...' (ab repeats), equivalent fraction will be
"repeating group (here ab)"/"as many 9's as the number of digits in repeating group"
2. For recurring decimals of format '0.abbbbb...' (b repeats), equivalent fraction will be (entire
decimal group - non-repeating decimal group)/(as many 9's as the number of repeating
digits in the decimal part with as many 0's as the number of non-repeating digits in the
decimal part)

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