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10

Trigonometric ratios and


applications
Trigonometry comes from the Greek words trigon (triangle) and metron
(measurement). Trigonometry has many applications in mathematics; however,
in this chapter we will investigate its use in triangles. In simple terms
trigonometry involves finding unknown side lengths or unknown angles. We
can apply trigonometry of triangles in many areas of real life. Surveyors use
trigonometry to calculate fence lines of a house. Ship captains use
trigonometry to get a safe passage out of a harbour or navigate around the
world. Engineers use trigonometry to determine how high a bridge can be
built. The applications for trigonometry go on and on. In the past you would
have investigated the trigonometry of right-angled triangles. Lets revisit this
theory and also investigate trigonometry of non right-angled triangles.

MathsWorld General Mathematics Units 1 & 2

10.1

Right-angled triangles

Trigonometric ratios of right-angled triangles


We first need to identify names or references for the side lengths and angles of a right-angled
triangle. Call one of the angles, other than the right angle, (theta).

A
Side adjacent
to

Hypotenuse
H

OR

H
A

O
Side opposite

The diagrams show how to name the sides of a right-angled triangle, relative to the angle .
.

The hypotenuse (H) faces the right angle.

The opposite side (O) faces .

The adjacent side (A) is next to .

The trigonometric ratios linking the three sides and the angle are known as sine, cosine and
tangent. They are abbreviated to sin, cos and tan, and they are defined as shown.
All the ratios involve three parts,
namely two sides and the angle .
It depends on the question(s) posed
which one of the three ratios you will
need to use. This is the first decision
that needs to be made. You are
probably familiar with the mnemonic
SOH-CAH-TOA, to help with
remembering the rules for each ratio.

Standard trigonometric ratios


Opposite side
sin = ------------------------------------Hypotenuse

O
sin = ----H

(SOH)

Adjacent side
cos = --------------------------------------Hypotenuse

A
cos = ---H

(CAH)

Opposite side
tan = ------------------------------------Adjacent Side

O
tan = ----A

(TOA)

Forms for angles


Angles are usually expressed in one of two ways: in decimal degree form (e.g. 21.25), or in
degrees and minutes form (e.g. 2115), where there are 60 minutes (60) in one degree.
(In some applications there is a further division into seconds, where there are 60 seconds
(60) in one minute.)
It is possible to convert from one form to another.

374

chapter

Trigonometric ratios and applications

10

Converting angle forms

10.1

Exa mple 1
a Convert 35.13 into degrees and minutes.
b Convert 2714 into decimal form,
correct to two decimal places.

S o lu tio n
GC 1.6
CAS 1.6

a Since there are 60 in one degree,


0.13 represents 0.13 60 = 7.8.
To the nearest minute, this is 8.
So 35.13 = 358
14
b 14 represents ------ of one degree.
60
14
------ = 0.2333
60
So 2714 = 27.23 to two decimal places.

tip
You can use your graphics calculator to
automate this process. For example 1a,
use the DMS (degrees, minutes, seconds)
command from the ANGLE menu. For
example 1b, just enter the angle.

If the number of seconds ( ) is 30 or


more, round up to give the nearest
minute. So for part a, the angle is 358.

Exa mple 2
Find the value of the following, correct to three decimal places, using a graphics calculator.
a sin 33
b cos 76.87
c tan 1255

S o lu tio n
First make sure your calculator is set in degree mode. The screenshots show the results.
a
b
GC 1.6
CAS 1.6

So sin 33 = 0.545

So cos 76.87 = 0.227

55
c As there are 60 in one degree, 55 represents -----60
of a degree. You can then use your calculator in two
different ways as shown in the screenshot.

So tan 1255 = 0.229.

tip
When set in DEGREE mode, you
do not have to type the degree
symbol. Thus, SIN(33) and
SIN(33) will both give the same
answer. However, if the angle
is expressed in degrees and
minutes, you need to change
to degrees or identify the number
of degrees and minutes as in
example 2c.

375

MathsWorld General Mathematics Units 1 & 2

exercise 10.1
1

Use your graphics calculator to find the value of the following to 3 decimal places.
a

sin 43

cos 5

tan 77

cos 56

sin 59

tan 12

sin 23.55

tan 1615

cos 88.95

cos 573

sin 0.99

tan 1111

Convert the following angles into degrees and minutes.


a

23.55

16.99

253.9

56.087

150.5

1.75

33.555

12.25

Convert the following angles into decimals (to two decimal places).
a

3225

5436

11355

6659

4501

22

2230

7245

For the following right angled triangles:


i

name all the parts of the triangle labelled using O, A, H and .

ii

choose which trigonometric ratio could be used to find the pronumeral (but dont solve).
a

33
3m

xm
56 mm
x mm
57

x cm
3.45 cm

575 mm
47
x

335 mm

12 m

13.66 cm

x
20 m
21.80 cm

25.73 cm
x

376

chapter

Trigonometric ratios and applications

10

Finding a side

10.1

Exa mple 3
Find the value of x, correct to three decimal places.

S o lu tio n
The required side is opposite the known angle,
and we are also given the hypotenuse, so we
use the sine ratio.
O
sin = ----H
x
sin 35 = --5
x = 5 sin 35
= 2.868

x cm

5 cm
35

On a graphics calculator, the


calculation looks like this:

GC 1.6
CAS 1.6

Exa mple 4
Find the value of x, correct to three decimal
places.

S o lu tio n
The required side is facing the right angle
(the hypotenuse), and we are given the
adjacent side, so we use the cosine ratio.
A
cos = ---H
11.3
cos 56 = ----------x
x = 11.3 cos 56
11.3
= ------------------cos 56
= 20.208

x mm
56 11.3 mm

On a graphics calculator, the


calculation looks like this:

Finding an angle
Exa mple 5
Find the angle in this right-angled triangle,
giving the answer in degrees and minutes.
24 m

17 m

377

MathsWorld General Mathematics Units 1 & 2

S o lu tio n

GC 1.5, 1.6
CAS 1.5, 1.6

Identifying the information given we have the opposite and the adjacent side lengths.
So we use the tangent ratio.
O
tan = ----A
17
= -----24
To find , use the inverse of tan on your calculator,
shown as Tan1 on the TI-83/84.
Warning
= 35.31
In many problems involving
On a graphics calculator the calculation looks like this.
trigonometric ratios, errors
are made when the incorrect
trigonometric ratio is used
to find an unknown, or when
the trigonometric ratio used
is not correctly transposed
when finding the unknown.
So in degrees and minutes the angle is 3519.

Exa mple 6
Find the values of x and y in the given composite
shape, correct to two decimal places.

11 cm

19 cm

x cm

80

70
y cm

S o lu tio n
First we need to identify the shapes that make
up the composite shape.
These are two right-angled triangles and a rectangle
as shown.
We can use the left triangle to find the height,
h cm, of the composite shape.
Since this is opposite the known angle, and we
are given the hypotenuse, we use the sine ratio.
sin =
sin 70 =
h=
=

378

O
----H
h
-----19
19 sin 70
17.854

19 cm

70

h cm

19 cm

h cm

x cm

70

tip

80

When two-decimal-place accuracy is


required, work to at least three decimal
places and correct at the end.
Alternatively, store intermediate values
in your graphics calculator to work with
later. For example, the answer for h
could be stored in location H and
retrieved for further calculation.

chapter

Trigonometric ratios and applications

10

Using this height we can determine the value of x in the right triangle.
sin =
sin 80 =
x=
=
=

O
----H
17.854
-----------------x
17.854 sin 80
17.854
-----------------sin 80
18.129

10.1

x cm
17.854

80

To find the value of y we need to find the lengths of the adjacent sides in the two triangles,
labelled as a cm and b cm below.

19 cm

18.129 cm

70
a cm

b cm
80

Use the cosine ratio in each case.


A
A
cos = ---cos = ---H
H
a
b
cos 70 = -----cos 80 = -----------------19
18.129
a = 19 cos 70
b = 18.129 cos 80
= 6.498
= 3.148
So y = a + 11 + b
= 6.498 + 11 + 3.148
= 20.646
Thus, correct to two decimal places, x = 18.13 and y = 20.65.

exercise 10.1

continued

5 Using trigonometric ratios find the value of x in each of the following. (Give answers to
three decimal places in each case.)
a

b
xm
6.25 m
12 m

43

33
xm

379

MathsWorld General Mathematics Units 1 & 2

d
11.5 mm

634
xm
x mm
1323
23.5 m

xm

115

42

67.35
101.1 m

6 Find the value of the pronumerals in each of the following, giving answers to three
decimal places.
a

13

c
xm
x cm

21

50
10 cm

75
y

e
52

18
40

y
x

68

20
b

16

7 Find the value of in degrees and minutes correct to the nearest minute.
115
a sin = 0.236
b cos = --------c tan = 2.667
237
11
d cos = 0.183
e sin = 0.977
f tan = -----35

380

6m

y cm
40

chapter

Trigonometric ratios and applications

10

8 Find the value of , giving answers in degrees to two decimal places.


a

21 m

116 m

11 m
235 m

87.2

73.66 mm

43.6

10.1

4.04 cm

21.57 mm
5.05 cm

9 Find the value of , giving answers in degrees and minutes correct to the nearest minute.
a

67.3

17.89 mm

12.06 mm

117.9

77.89 cm

23.55 cm

97.1 m

61.2

56.7

117.8 m

167.83 m

15.22 m

10 Find the values of x and y, giving answers in degrees correct to two decimal places.
a

3.5
x

y
4.5

4.8

3.3
y

x
6.67

381

MathsWorld General Mathematics Units 1 & 2

Two-dimensional applications
Exa mple 7
A stunt woman wants to make a
double-sided motorcycle ramp so
that it is set at an incline of 2710,
as shown in the diagram. How long
correct to the nearest cm is each
side of the ramp?

S o lu tio n

2710

2710

Drop a perpendicular line from Q to PR, meeting at S.


The width of the ramp is 11.7 m, so PS is half that distance
which is 5.85 m.
2710'
P
In the right-angled triangle PQS, we have an angle at P,
5.85 m
the length of the adjacent side, and we want to find PQ,
the hypotenuse. So we use cosine.
We know the side adjacent to the hypotenuse.
Substitute in the given information.
A
cos = ---H
5.85
cos 2710 = ----------PQ
PQ cos 2710 = 5.85
5.85
PQ = --------------------------cos 2810
= 6.5754
Since we require the answer correct to the nearest centimetre, i.e. to the nearest
one hundredth of a metre, round to two decimal places.
Hence each side of the motorcycle ramp has length 6.58 m.

exercise 10.1

11.7 m
Q

continued

11 A 7.4 metre-long ladder rests against a vertical wall and makes an angle of 35 with the
horizontal ground.
a

How high up does the ladder reach on the wall?

If the wall is 5 m high, what angle must the ladder make with the horizontal for the
ladder to just reach the top of the wall?

12 A wheelchair ramp needs to be at an angle of 513 with the ground. If a step 75 cm high
is to have a wheelchair ramp fitted onto it for wheelchair access, how long, to the nearest
cm, should the wheelchair ramp be?

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chapter

Trigonometric ratios and applications

10

13 Michael is playing golf; he is about to take a shot using a golf club 1.05 m long. While he
is holding his club his arms add 56 cm to the length of the club and his feet are 90 cm
from the ball. If Michael stands at a right angle to the ground when taking the shot, what
angle does the golf club make with the ground?

10.1

14 A young girl is flying her new kite. The kite


has a guide rope of length 125 m and the
maximum height the kite can reach is 33.5 m
above the ground. If the girl is holding the end
of the guide rope 1 m above the ground, find
the angle made by the guide rope with the
horizontal, to the nearest minute, if the kite is
at its maximum height.

15 Find the values of x and y to two decimal places.


The base of the wedge is a rectangle.

115 cm

y cm
23
x cm

16 A camping tent is 1.25 m tall when fully erected. For stability the tent needs four cables
attached to the ground so they each make an angle of 3325 with the horizontal. What is
the minimum amount of cable required?

1.25 m

3325

Numbersense with the spence


Seventeen is important in the Islamic tradition. The great Muslim alchemist Jabir ibn
Hayyan believed that 17 was the basis for the material world, which consisted of the series 1,
3, 5 and 8. The cycles of prayer movements in the 5 daily prayer amounts to
17 and 17 is the number of words in the call to prayer.

17

383

MathsWorld General Mathematics Units 1 & 2

10 . 2

Applications of
trigonometry

Angles of elevation and depression


Angles of elevation and depression involve the use of trigonometry to once again find a side
length or an angle. For example, angles of elevation and depression are commonly used in
navigation or construction. They are used when we either have to look up to something from
the ground or look down at something from a mountain or top of a building.

igh

fs

eo

lin

The angle of elevation is the angle between the


horizontal and the line of sight when an object is higher
than the observer. In this diagram it is the angle between
the horizontal and the line of sight from the boat to the
lighthouse.

angle of elevation

observation point
angle of depression

igh

fs

eo

lin

The angle of depression is the angle between the horizontal


and the line of sight when an object is below the level of the
observer. In this diagram it is the angle between the horizontal
and the line of sight from the lighthouse to the boat.

observation
point

It is important to remember that the angles of elevation


and depression are always measured from the horizontal.
The angles of elevation and depression are equal because
they are alternate angles.

angle of depression

angle of elevation

Warning

Label or perish!

When you are solving problems using angles of elevation and depression it is important
to draw clear diagrams labelling all sides with the relevant information. In particular,
think about whether the angle at the observation point ( ) marks the angle down from
the horizontal (for depression) or marks the angle up from the horizontal (for elevation).

384

chapter

Trigonometric ratios and applications

10

Exa mple 1

10.2

A boat is 240 m from the base of a cliff 150 m high. Find the angle of elevation from the
boat to the top of the cliff to the nearest degree.

S o lu tio n

150
tan = ---------240
= 0.625
= 32.005
The angle of elevation from the boat to
the top of the cliff is 32, correct to the
nearest degree.

150 m

Cliff

Draw a diagram and clearly label with the relevant information.


Using SOHCAHTOA, the opposite and adjacent sides are given so we use tan.

240 m

Exa mple 2
The angle of depression of a cyclist from the top of a building 200 m away is 50.
Calculate the height of the building to the nearest metre.

S o lu tio n
Draw a diagram and clearly label with the relevant
information.
Let x metres be the height of the building.
A = 50 (alternate angles)
Using SOHCAHTOA, the opposite and adjacent
sides are involved so we use tan.
x
A
tan 50 = ---------200
x = 200 tan 50
= 238.35
The height of the building is 238 metres, correct to the nearest metre.

B
50

xm

200 m

exercise 10.2
1 The angle of elevation of a kite, K, from a point A on the
ground is 35. If the kite is 75 m above the ground,
what is the line-of-sight distance, to the nearest metre,
from point A to the kite?

75 m

35

385

MathsWorld General Mathematics Units 1 & 2

2 To find the height of the skyscraper in the diagram an engineer


x
used the equation tan 55 = ------ .
80
a Why did the engineer use tan 55?
b

55

What is the height of the skyscraper to the nearest metre?


80 m

3 The angle of depression from the top of a lifesaving tower 100 m high to a buoy at sea
is 2318. Find the horizontal distance from the lifesaving tower to the buoy correct to
2 decimal places.
4 A yacht is 2.4 km away from the base of a lighthouse. The lighthouse is 300 m in height.
Calculate the angle of depression to the nearest degree, from the top of the lighthouse to
the yacht.
5 The angle of elevation from a boat to the top of a cliff is 1524. The boat is 50 m from the
base of the cliff. How high is the cliff to the nearest metre?
6 Charlotte standing on the ground observes a bird on top of a tree which is 100 m away.
Find the angle of elevation to the nearest degree given Charlotte is 1.6 m tall and the tree
has a height of 15 m.
7 A helicopter pilot spots two distressed fishermen whose
boat has capsized. The helicopter is 200 m above
sea level. The angles of depression of the two fishermen
are 3727 and 5824 respectively. The fishermen and
the helicopter lie in the same vertical plane.

Complete the diagram by indicating all angles and lengths, F1


and hence find the distance between the two fishermen,
correct to the nearest metre.

F2

8 A wheel chair access ramp rises 30 cm for every 1 m of the ramp. Find the angle of
elevation of the ramp in degrees and minutes.
9 Paradise Hotel and The Venetian are two vertical hotels 68 m and 115 m high respectively.
They stand directly opposite each other with a lake separating them. The angle of
elevation from the top of the Paradise Hotel to the top of The Venetian is 31.
Draw a clearly labelled diagram representing the situation, and hence find the width of the
lake? Give your answer to two decimal places.
10 Use the information provided in the diagram
to calculate the height of a communications
tower correct to the nearest metre. Note that
the tower is located at the top of a hill.

xm

3318
35
320 m

386

Bearings

chapter

Trigonometric ratios and applications

10
10.2

Bearings are used to represent


the direction of one object from
120
340
another. There are two different
W
E
W
ways bearings are expressed.
The first is as a true bearing.
True bearings are measured in a
clockwise direction beginning
S
S
from north, which is 0T. True
bearings are generally expressed using 3 digits, for example 050T or 120T or 340T. In
practice where there is no possibility of confusion, the T is omitted as in these diagrams.

Bearings are also expressed as compass or conventional bearings. These bearings are
measured first from north or south, then in the direction of east or west. For example, N75E
and S25W are shown below.
N

tip
When solving questions involving
directions and bearings it is
important to always draw
compass points N, S, E, W
and clearly label diagrams.
Remember that all bearings are
in a horizontal plane. Due north
is directly north, due south is
directly south, etc.

75
W

25
S
N75E

S
S25W

It is possible to convert from one type of bearing to the other. For example N75E is the
same as 075, S25W is the same as 205(180 + 25) and 335 (360 25) is equivalent to
N25W.

Exa mple 3
A hiker walks 3.2 km in a direction N34E to base camp B. How far north is she from her
starting point O, correct to two decimal places?

S o lu tio n
Draw a clearly labelled diagram.
N

34 3.2 km
W

Identify the right-angled triangle.


B

x km

3.2 km
34

E
O

387

MathsWorld General Mathematics Units 1 & 2

Using SOHCAHTOA, the hypotenuse and adjacent sides are involved so use cos.
x
cos 34 = -------3.2
x = 3.2 cos 34
= 2.65
The hiker is 2.65 km north of her starting point O.

Exa mple 4
A ferry travels 4.5 km from a point A on a bearing of 150 to a point B.
a How far south has the ferry travelled, correct to one decimal place?
b From this point if the ferry turns and travels on a bearing of 100 for 7.1 km to a point C,
how far south is the ferry from point A, correct to one decimal place?

S o lu tio n
a Draw a clearly labelled diagram.

Identify the right-angled triangle.


A

30
4.5 km

x km

150

E
B

4.5 km
S

Using SOHCAHTOA, the hypotenuse and adjacent sides are involved so we use cos.
x
cos 30 = -------4.5
x = 4.5 cos 30
= 3.897
The ferry has travelled 3.9 km south.
b Draw a clearly labelled diagram
representing the new information.

Identify the right-angled triangle.

B
y km

80
7.1 km
C

150
N
4.5
km

100

B
7.1 km
C

388

chapter

Trigonometric ratios and applications

10

Using SOHCAHTOA, the hypotenuse and adjacent sides are involved so we use cos.
y
cos 80 = -------7.1
y = 7.1 cos 80
= 1.233
To find how far south the ferry is from point A, simply add x and y.

10.2

x + y = 3.987 + 1.233
= 5.130
So the ferry is 5.1 km south of point A.

exercise 10.2
CD10.1
Sailing
TAI

11 Match the true and compass


bearings in the left-hand list
to the true and compass
bearings in the right-hand list.

continued
N23W
340
S12E
N80E
269
S45W
N3W
025
100
S15E

080
225
357
337
S80E
N20W
168
N25E
165
S89W

12 A car travels due south for 200 m and then turns due east and travels a further 300 m.
What is the bearing of the car from its starting point (to the nearest degree)?
13 X is on a bearing of 050 from Y. What is the bearing of Y from X?
14 A plane travels on a bearing of S12E for 2 km. How far south is the plane from its
starting point now?
15 A speedboat travels 1900 metres on a bearing of N18E. How far east has the boat
travelled from its starting point to the nearest metre?
16 A helicopter flies due north for 260 km and then turns due west and flies a further
distance of 410 km. Calculate the bearing, to the nearest degree, of the helicopter from its
starting point.
17 A hiker on an expedition walks 5 km on a bearing of N60E to a point A. She then turns
and walks due south to a marker M. Her final leg is from M, due east of her starting
point O, back to O. Find the total length of the expedition to the nearest km.
18 A boat travels 3.3 km from a point A on a bearing of 080 to a point B.
a

How far north of the starting point has the boat travelled, correct to one decimal place?

From this point the boat turns and travels on a bearing of 045 for 5.2 km to a point
C. How far north is the boat from point A, correct to one decimal place?

389

MathsWorld General Mathematics Units 1 & 2

19 From a point P at sea one yacht sailed 5 km on a bearing of 040 and a second yacht
sailed 8 km on a bearing of 130.
a

Draw a diagram of the situation, and hence find how far apart the two yachts are at
this time.

What is the bearing of the first yacht from the second yacht?

20 A cruiser starting from a point P travels on a bearing of 205 for 22 km. It then changes
course and travels to a point Q on a bearing of 240 for 30 km. Calculate:
a

how far south the cruiser is from its original starting point.

how far west the cruiser is from its original starting point.

the bearing of the cruiser from its original starting point.

analysis task 1
baywatch rescue
CD10.2

SAC

Baywatch rescue
SAC analysis task

A lifeguard observes a rescue boat due north of his position on the beach. The lifeguard
also observes a swimmer in distress on a bearing of N52E at a distance of 470 m. The
swimmer is due east of the rescue boat.
a Draw a diagram representing the above situation.
b i

Calculate the distance between the lifeguard and the rescue boat.

ii Calculate the distance between the rescue boat and the swimmer.
The rescue boat is experiencing difficulties and is unable to reach the swimmer. The
lifeguard looks a further 25 to the right of the swimmer in distress and spots a shark
900 m away.
c Add the shark to the original diagram.
d What is the bearing of the shark from the lifeguard?
e How far north is the shark from the lifeguard?
f How far east is the shark from the lifeguard?
g What is the distance between the swimmer and the shark? Who is closer to the swimmer:
the lifeguard or the shark?
In order for the lifeguard to rescue the distressed swimmer the shark needs to be caught.
A second rescue boat on the beach due east of the lifeguard is equipped to catch sharks.
The second rescue boat is in a direct line with the shark and the swimmer.
h Add the second rescue boat to the diagram.
i Calculate how far the boat must travel and on what bearing to catch the shark, given
that the shark has not begun to approach the swimmer yet.

390

10 . 3

chapter

Trigonometric ratios and applications

10

Non-right angled triangles

A useful way to label non-right angled triangles is to label


the three vertices with uppercase letters for example A, B
and C, and then label the sides opposite these vertices with
the corresponding lowercase letters, a, b and c. Using this
notation, A also represents the angle BAC and a represents
the length of the side opposite angle A.

10.3

Sine rule

For a triangle ABC, the sine rule states that the ratios of each side to the sine of its opposite
angle are equal:
a
b
c
------------ = ------------ = -----------sin B
sin C
sin A
Note that a is opposite A, b is opposite B and c is opposite C.
The sine rule is used when we know either:
.

one side and two angles, or

two sides and an angle opposite one of the sides.

Exa mple 1
For ABC find the remaining side lengths, correct to two decimal places, given that B = 33,
C = 75 and AB = 7.9 mm.

S o lu tio n
First draw a sketch of the triangle and label it appropriately.
Since we know c, B and C, we can find b by substituting the
given information into the appropriate formula:
b
7.9
------------------ = ----------------sin 33
sin 75
7.9
b = ----------------- sin 33
sin 75
= 4.45
The angles in a triangle sum up to 180, so if B = 33 and
C = 75, then A = 72.
Now we can solve for a:

B
33

a mm

7.9 mm

75

A
b mm

a
7.9
----------------- = ----------------sin 72
sin 75
7.9
a = ----------------- sin 72
sin 75
= 7.78
Hence AC = 4.45 mm and BC = 7.78 mm.

391

MathsWorld General Mathematics Units 1 & 2

GC 1.6
CAS 1.6

The screenshot at the right shows the calculations used to


find b and a.

Exa mple 2
For this triangle, find the remaining angles and remaining
side lengths.

S o lu tio n
Identify the information:
c = 15.9
a = 23.6
A = 112
We can use these values to solve for C:

23.6 mm
15.9 mm
112
A

tip

b mm

23.6
15.9
-------------------- = -----------You can use your calculator to find C as
sin C
sin 112
shown in the following screenshot.
sin 112
sin C
-------------------- = -----------23.6
15.9
sin 112
-------------------- 15.9 = sin C
23.6
sin C = 0.6247
C = 38.66
Now we can find B, since A + B + C = 180.
B = 180 150.66
= 29.34
We can now find b using these values:
a = 23.6
A = 112
B = 29.34
Substitute into the appropriate formula to solve for b:
23.6
b
-------------------- = ------------------------sin 112
sin 29.34
23.6
-------------------- sin 29.34 = b
sin 112
b = 12.47
In summary, AC = 12.47 cm, B = 29.34 and C = 38.66.

392

chapter

Trigonometric ratios and applications

10

exercise 10.3
1

2
3
4

10.3

a In ABC, a = 11, b = 12 and B = 48. Find A, C and c.


b In ABC, c = 13.75, a = 28.62 and A = 11037. Find C, B and b.
c In ABC, a = 5.5, A = 25 and B = 80. Find C, b and c.
d In ABC, c = 2.73, C = 52.5 and A = 102.4. Find B, a and b.
In ABC, a = 7, b = 5 and A = 72. Find the perimeter of the triangle.
Find the shortest side of ABC, where A = 3356, B = 35 and AB = 80 mm.
Find the value of the pronumeral in the following, correct to two decimal places.
a

x cm
7.5 cm
47

42

23 mm

50

33
x mm

65 mm

58

103
x

5
6

3.67 cm

140 mm

5.23 cm

Find all the unknown sides and angles of a triangle, where the smallest side is 21 cm in
length, the smallest angle is 29 in size, and another angle is 50 in size.
Find the value of x correct to three decimal places.
52
x

7.6
61
9.2

Sine rule: the ambiguous case


If we are given two sides of a triangle and an angle opposite one of these sides, it is
sometimes possible to create two different triangles with the same information.
For example, consider ABC with A = 40, BC = 5 cm and AC = 7 cm. If we try to construct
a triangle from this information, two triangles are possible.
Two possible s

7 cm
5 cm
A

40
B

C
7 cm

5 cm

40

7 cm

5 cm

5 cm
A

40

Since A is the only defined angle, the ambiguous case arises at angle B which can be acute
(as in the first triangle) or obtuse (as in the second triangle).

393

MathsWorld General Mathematics Units 1 & 2

Exa mple 3
In ABC, A = 30, BC = 25 cm and AC = 35 cm. Find the two possible values for
angles B and C.

S o lu tio n
Drawing the two possible triangles from this information we find the following.
C

35 cm

35 cm

25 cm

25 cm

B A

35 cm

25 cm

25 cm

30
A

30

30
B

Using the sine rule:


a
b
------------ = -----------sin B
sin A
25
35
----------------- = -----------sin 30
sin B
sin B
sin 30
----------------- = -----------25
35
sin 30
----------------- 35 = sin B
25
C
0.7 = sin B
B = 44.43
35 cm
From the diagram, we can see that the
25 cm
25 cm
second solution corresponds to:
30 135.57
44.43
B = 180 44.43
44.43
B
A
B
= 135.57
So we find an acute answer and an obtuse answer for B depending on the orientation of the
triangle. The two angles are supplementary.
Now if angle B has two answers, so will angle C:
A = 30, B = 44.43: then C = 180 (30 + 44.43) = 105.57
or
A = 30, B = 135.57: then C = 180 (30 + 135.57) = 14.43
14.43 C

C
105.57
35 cm

35 cm

25 cm

25 cm
30
A

394

44.43
B

30 135.57
B

exercise 10.3

chapter

Trigonometric ratios and applications

10
10.3

continued

7 In ABC, a = 12, b = 8 and B = 40. Find two possible sets of values for A, C and c.
8 In ABC, c = 16, a = 26 and C = 33.
a Draw two possible triangles that suit this information.
b For each triangle, find all unknown values.
9 In this diagram, find the values of x and y.
7 cm

x cm

70

55
y cm

10 In ABC, AC = 16, AB = 22 and B = 36. Find two possible values for the perimeter of the
triangle.
11 In PQR, P = 25, PQ = 27 and QR = 19.
Show that the information given for PQR leads to two possible triangles, and hence, for
each triangle, find all unknown values.

Cosine rule
For a triangle ABC, the cosine rule is given by:

a2 = b2 + c 2 2bc cos A
The cosine rule is used when we know either:
.

all three sides, or

two sides and the included angle.

b
A

tip
If the labels are given, we can write
the formula in two other ways:
b 2 = a 2 + c 2 2ac cos B
c 2 = a 2 + b 2 2ab cos C

Exa mple 4
Find the value of x.
83 m

67

47 m

A
c
83 m

xm

S o lu tio n

b
47 m

We need to label the triangle and identify the information given.


Using the cosine rule:
a 2 = b 2 + c 2 2bc cos A

67

xm
a
C

395

MathsWorld General Mathematics Units 1 & 2

GC 1.6
CAS 1.6

Substitute the given information to solve for a.


a 2 = b 2 + c 2 2bc cos A
x 2 = 472 + 832 2 47 83 cos 67
x = 47 2 + 83 2 2 47 83 cos 67
= 77.78
The calculation is shown in the TI-83/84 screenshot.

Exa mple 5
Stephen the farmer has to use two horses to pull his plough. He has two ropes that he
attaches to each horse and the plough. The ropes are 5.2 m and 5.3 m long. The horses are
kept at a distance of 1.8 m apart. At what angle do the two ropes meet with each other?

S o lu tio n
Firstly, we need to draw a labelled diagram
that correctly describes Stephens situation.
So we now have the following information:
a = 1.8
b = 5.2
c = 5.3
Substitute the information into the formula
that involves A:
a2 = b2 + c2 2bc cos A
1.82 = 5.22 + 5.32 2 5.2 5.3 cos A
2
2
1.8 (5.2 + 5.32) = 2 5.2 5.3 cos A
51.89 = 55.12 cos A
51.89
cos A = ----------------- 55.12
A = 19.72

a = 1.8

C
b = 5.2

c = 5.3
A

Exa mple 6
A snack food company is designing a new triangular corn chip. If the corn chip has two sides
of length 25 mm and 31 mm with an included angle of 62, what is the length of the third
side and the size of the two other angles? Give answers correct to two decimal places.

S o lu tio n
Construct a triangle from the given information and label
the sides appropriately. With these labels we now have the
following information:
b = 31
c = 25
A = 62
Substitute the information into the cosine rule to find a:
a 2 = b 2 + c 2 2bc cos A
= 252 + 312 2 25 31 cos 62
a = 25 2 + 31 2 2 25 31 cos 62
= 29.297

396

A
62
25 mm
B

31 mm

chapter

Trigonometric ratios and applications

10

To find B, use the cosine rule:


b 2 = a 2 + c2 2ac cos B
312 = 29.2972 + 252 2 29.297 25 cos B
Transpose and solve for B.
522.314 = 1464.85 cos B
522.314
cos B = --------------------1464.25
= 0.3566
B = 69.11
To find C we use the angle sum of a triangle:
A + B + C = 180, so:
C = 180 (62 + 69.1)
= 48.89
Hence correct to two decimal places, the third side has length 29.30 mm and the remaining
angles are 69.11 and 48.89.

exercise 10.3

10.3

continued

12 Find the third side of ABC, given, b = 8.6, c = 5.2, A = 47.


13 Find all the angles in ABC, whose side lengths are 7 cm, 9 cm and 12 cm.
14 Find the largest angle of the triangle shown.
186 mm
113 mm

216 mm

15 In ABC, a = 16, b = 15, C = 107. Find c.


16 Find all the missing side lengths and angles in this triangle.
10
58
23

17 In ABC, b = 5.7, c = 6.6, A = 4428. Find a.


18 Find the value of x in the following.
a

x mm

8m

7.2 mm
32

9m

5m

14.1 mm
9.6 mm

43

6m

397

MathsWorld General Mathematics Units 1 & 2

19 Johnny Black is playing in his under 17s football grand final. The siren has gone and
Johnny is lining up to kick the winning goal. He is 37 m from one of the goal posts and
63 m from the other goal post. The goal posts are 28.5 m apart. Within what angle must
Johnny kick the winning goal?
20 A plane flies in a direction of N77E for 67 km. Then it flies on a bearing of S25W for
193 km. How far is the starting point of the plane from its current position?
21 The back of a picture frame is shown. The painting
is hung and the wires holding it up are shown. What
is the distance between the two nails?

15.4 cm

hook
14.2 cm
150

nail

nail

22 A yacht race comprises three legs. The first leg is in a direction of 019 for 39 km, the
second leg is a distance of 55 km at a bearing of 159. If the race is completed when a
competing yacht returns to the start, what is the bearing and distance of the third leg?
23 Mary is bushwalking through a wildlife sanctuary. As she walks she can see a falcon
hovering in the air in front of her. The angle of elevation Mary sees the falcon at is 50.
Mary walks 20 m and can still see the falcon, which has not moved position, hovering in
the air in front of her. The angle of elevation this time is 64. How far above Mary is the
falcon hovering?
24 A bunny rabbit hops out of her hole at 8 km/h and travels at this speed for 45 min on a
bearing of 145. Then she suddenly changes direction and hops at a new constant speed
for 80 min on a bearing of 053 until she is due east of her starting point.
a

How far did the bunny rabbit hop after she changed direction?

How fast did the bunny rabbit hop after she changed direction?

How far does the bunny rabbit need to go to get back to her hole?

25 The 18th hole at a golf


course is illustrated. (The
18th hole has a par 3; that
means the hole should be
completed in three strokes.)

130 m

100 m

Two golfers, Norman and


Greg, are having a playoff
C
A
A
to see who will be the next
champion. Norman knows
he can make the 18th hole in
two strokes. If Norman tees up at a bearing of 032 and hits at a distance of 130 m he will
make it to point B. Then at a bearing of 100 hitting a distance 100 m, he can get to the
hole C, shooting one under par (i.e. one less than par 3).
Greg needs to beat Norman, so he has to get a hole in one. What bearing and distance
must Greg take his shot to beat Norman?

398

chapter

Trigonometric ratios and applications

10

26 A plane takes off from an airport and flies at a bearing of S25W for 145 km, then changes
direction and flies for 215 km and lands at another airport. The bearing from the second
airport to the original airport is N60W. How far are the two airports from each other?
27 A construction company is constructing a
five-storey building. They are currently working
on the 3rd floor. To bring the required material
up to the work site the workmen use a rope to
pull their equipment up the side of the building.
To stop any damage to the building as the
materials and equipment are pulled up they
have attached a ramp that keeps the rope and
materials off the side of the building (illustrated).

10.3

3rd floor

winch
50

25 m
25

The 3rd floor is 25 m above the ground. The ramp


slopes outward at an angle of depression of 50, then
cuts back at an angle of 25 to the vertical meeting
the ground directly below the ramp. A winch is
attached to the floor 2 m from the edge so as to pull up the equipment and materials.
How much rope will need to be fitted to the winch to pull up the required materials?

SAC

analysis task 2
which way should I go?
CD10.3
Which way should I go?
SAC analysis task

A race car is testing a new track that has


been constructed. One of the corners in
this race track is in the shape of a quarter
circle of a circular annulus, so that as a
race car drives through this corner the
width of the track does not change. While
the race car is in the corner, it can leave
the track as long as part of the racing car
is on the track (this is called cutting the
corner). The race car being used is able to
take very sharp turns.
On the race cars first run of the track
the driver decides to stay in the outside
lane as he approaches the turn; the
on-board computer in the race car has
calculated for the driver that there are
two possible driving lines through the
corner. They are illustrated in figure 1.

wm

15 m

Figure 1

399

MathsWorld General Mathematics Units 1 & 2

a The length of the longest driving line in the corner is 33.6 m and the shortest driving
line in the corner is 28.5 m, with a turning angle between these lines of 108. If this
driving line places the racing car in the centre of the outside or inside lanes when
leaving the corner, as shown in figure 1, what is the width, w m, of the track?
On the second series of testing, the
driver approaches the corner while
in the centre of the track, as
illustrated in figure 2.

wm

b What is the length of each driving


line, and the angle of the turn
between these two driving lines?
c Will the racing car cut the corner
during this second series of
testing?

15 m

Figure 2

In the final series of testing the


driver wants to push the racing car to
the extreme through the corner. He
approaches the corner centred in the
inside lane, as illustrated in figure 3.

wm

d What is the length of each driving


line, and the angle of the turn
between these two driving lines?
15 m

Figure 3

400

10 . 4

chapter

Trigonometric ratios and applications

10

Area of a triangle

10.4

1
Recall that the area of a triangle is given by --- b h , where the height, h, is the
2
perpendicular height. If h is unknown, but c and A are known, then
h
B
sin A = --tip
c
If labels are given, we can
h = c sin A
a
c
write this formula in two
1
h
Area = --- b ( c sin A )
other ways:
2
1
Area = --- ac sin B
A

That is,

2
1
Area = --- ab sin C
2

1
Area = --- bc sin A
2

Exa mple 1
Find the area of the triangle correct to one decimal place.
A
11 cm
B

110

4 cm
C

S o lu tio n
Substitute the given information into the area formula.
1
Area = --- bc sin A
2
1
= --- 4 11 sin 110
2
= 20.673
So the area of the triangle is 20.7 cm2 correct to one decimal place.

Exa mple 2
A triangle has dimensions as shown in the diagram.
Calculate the area to the nearest mm2.

A
68

S o lu tio n
It is evident that the area rule cannot be
applied because we do not have the angle
between the two side lengths given.
In this case we can use the sine rule to find B
and then find angle C.

40.3 mm

B
70.8 mm

401

MathsWorld General Mathematics Units 1 & 2

Substitute the given values into the sine rule:


a
b
------------ = -----------sin A
sin B
70.8
40.3
----------------- = -----------sin 68
sin B
sin 68
sin B
----------------- = -----------70.8
40.3
40.3 sin 68
sin B = ----------------------------------70.8
= 0.5278
B = 31.85
If B = 31.85 and A = 68 then
C = 180 (31.85 + 68).
= 80.15
Write down the appropriate rule for the area and substitute:
1
Area = --- ab sin C
2
1
= --- 70.8 40.3 sin 80.15
2
= 1405.6
So the area of the triangle is 1406 mm2, correct to the nearest mm2.

Herons formula
Heron, a Greek mathematician from Alexandria, is credited with a formula for the area of a
triangle given its three side lengths. This formula is called Herons formula.
B

Herons formula states that the area of a triangle is given by:


Area of =

1
s ( s a ) ( s b ) ( s c ) where s = --- ( a + b + c )
2

Notice that the perimeter of the triangle is a + b + c, so s is the semi-perimeter of the


triangle, that is, half the perimeter.

402

chapter

Trigonometric ratios and applications

10

Exa mple 3

10.4

Find the area of the triangle with side lengths 6.8 cm, 5.2 cm and 9 cm.

S o lu tio n
We have three given side lengths so we can use Herons formula.
Calculate the value for s by substituting values for
a, b and c.
tip
1
s = --- ( a + b + c )
2
CD10.4
1
= --- ( 6.8 + 5.2 + 9 )
2
= 10.5
Write down Herons formula, substitute values for
a, b, c and s and solve.
MENSURAT
GC program

The TI-83/84 program


MENSURAT can
be used to check your
answer.

Area = s ( s a ) ( s b ) ( s c )
= 10.5 ( 10.5 6.8 ) ( 10.5 5.2 ) ( 10.5 9 )
= 17.57
So the area of the triangle is 17.57 cm2.

exercise 10.4
1 Calculate the area of each of the following triangles to the nearest squared unit.
b

a A

c D

12.3 cm
1523

67 mm

5.4 cm

15 cm
E
A
B

8 cm

33
89 mm

2 Find the area of the triangle ABC with a = 4, b = 6 and C = 76.


3 Find the area of ABC, given A = 48, b = 5.6 and c = 7.2.
4 Calculate the area of the triangle with side lengths 3.4 mm, 6.5 mm and 7.3 mm.
5 Find the area of the triangle shown to the nearest
square centimetre.

112
12 cm

19 cm

6 A triangle ABC has side lengths BC = 57 mm, AB = 79 mm and angle C = 3725.


a

Find the size of each of angles A and B.

Find the area of the triangle to the nearest square millimetre.

403

MathsWorld General Mathematics Units 1 & 2

7 The area of triangle DEF is 64.4 cm2. If DF = 12 cm and DE = 21.4 cm, calculate angle D
to the nearest degree, assuming it is acute.
8 In the triangle pictured:
a

find the length of the hypotenuse.

use Herons formula to find the area of the triangle.

check that your answer to part b is correct by finding


the area of the triangle in a simpler way.

7
24

9 Find the area of a triangle with sides 35 mm, 46 mm and 53 mm.


10 In triangle ABD, the point C lies on BD so
that AC = AB. AK is perpendicular to BD.
a

Find the value of .

Calculate AK to the nearest cm.

Find the area of:


i

triangle ABC.

ii

triangle ACD.

A
18
31 cm

35 cm

11 A triangle has an area of 60 cm2. Two of its side lengths are 16 cm and 14 cm. Calculate
the magnitude of the angle between the two sides, assuming it is acute.
12 Find the magnitude of the smallest angle in ABC if the side lengths are 16 cm, 11 cm and
8 cm, and hence find the area of the triangle. Check your answer by using Herons
formula.
13 A triangular picture frame has two side lengths, 8 cm and 10 cm and a base length 12 cm.
Find, correct to one decimal place:
a

the area enclosed by the picture frame.

the height of the picture frame when it is standing on its 12 cm base.

14 Calculate the area of the regular hexagon


shown in the diagram.

5 cm

15 Find the area of this block of land to the nearest m2.


35 m
30 m
15 m
25 m

16 A parallelogram has sides with lengths of 30 cm and 45 cm and an angle of 81 between


them. Calculate the area of the parallelogram.

404

10 . 5

chapter

Trigonometric ratios and applications

10

Circle mensuration

10.5

Radian measure of an angle


Throughout the chapter, we have measured angles in degrees. This unit of angle measurement
is commonly used in navigation and surveying. However, there are other units of angle
measurement and one of these is the radian. Radian measure is often used when measuring
lengths and areas associated with circles.
This diagram shows a unit circle (it has radius 1 unit).
Imagine a piece of string of length 1 unit. We wrap the string
around the circumference of the circle from Q to P so that the arc
PQ has length 1 as shown. Then the angle subtended at the centre
of the circle, that is POQ, is called one radian and is written as
1c (or often just 1 when it is clear that we mean radian measure).

y
P
1
O

1c
1

Converting between degrees and radians


The circumference of a circle is given by C = 2 r, so for a unit circle, C = 2. This means that
there are 2 radians in a full circle. We also know that there are 360 in a full circle. It follows
that 2 c = 360, so c = 180.
As mentioned earlier, it is common to omit the symbol for radians so that c is just denoted
by . If there is no symbol present, assume that the angle measure is radians.
To convert between degrees and radians, we use the fact that 180 = . First we consider
some special angles.
180

30 = ------------ , so 30 = --6
6
180

45 = ------------ , so 45 = --4
4
180

60 = ------------ , so 60 = --3
3
For these special angles and multiples of them, it is common to express radians in terms of
as shown. For more general angles, it is usual to give the radian measure as a decimal.

Exa mple 1
Convert the following angles to radian measure, expressing answers in terms of .
a 90
b 210
c 135

S o lu tio n
180

a 90 = ------------ , so 90 = --2
2

405

MathsWorld General Mathematics Units 1 & 2

b Use the fact that 210 is a multiple of 30, which is one of the special angles.
210 = 7 30

= 7 --6
7
= -----6
c Use the fact that 135 is a multiple of 45, which is one of the special angles.
135 = 3 45

= 3 --4
3
= -----4

For other conversions, note that as 180 = , dividing by 180 gives 1 = --------- .
180

Exa mple 2
Convert the following angles to radian measure, giving answers correct to three decimal
places.
a 70
b 5623

S o lu tio n

a Using 1 = ---------- , multiply


180
both sides by 70.

70 = 70 ---------180
= 1.222

23
b As 23 = ------ = 0.3833, 5623 = 56.3833.
60

Using 1 = ---------- , multiply both sides by 56.3833.


180

5623 = 56.3833 ---------180


= 0.984

tip

GC 1.5
CAS 1.5

Conversion from degrees to radians in decimal form is easy


to do with a graphics calculator. On the TI-83/84, make sure
that you are in Radian mode. Enter the angle, with a degree
symbol at the end (found in the ANGLE menu) and press
ENTER. The calculator automatically does the conversion, so
you do not need to explicitly multiply by and divide by 180
(see the first screenshot).
However, when the angle is expressed in degrees and
minutes, you must add the degree symbol at the end;
if you do not, the calculator simply converts the minutes
part to a decimal as shown in the second screenshot.

180
To convert radians into degrees, note that as c = 180, dividing by gives 1c = ------------ or,

180
dropping the radian symbol, 1 = ------------ .

406

chapter

Trigonometric ratios and applications

10

Exa mple 3

10.5

Convert the following angles in radian measure to degree measure.


3
a -----b 1.9
4

tip

S o lu tio n

GC 1.5
CAS 1.5

3
180
a Using 1 = ------------ , multiply both sides by ------ .
4

3 180
3
------ = ------ -----------4
4

3 180
= ---------------------4
= 135
180
b Using 1 = ------------ , multiply both sides by 1.9.

180
1.9 = 1.9 -----------
= 108.86 (correct to 2 dp)

The calculation in part b is shown in the


following screenshot. If the answer is
required in degrees and minutes, the DMS
command in the ANGLE menu can be used.

So the answer in degrees and minutes,


correct to the nearest minute, is 10852.

exercise 10.5
1

Convert the following angles to radian measure, expressing answers in terms of .


a

30

90

45

120

300

225

330

180

450

Convert the following angles to radian measure, giving answers correct to three decimal
places.
a

14

78

124

256

302

359

3226

13014

20746

Convert the following angles in radian measure to degree measure.

3
a --b -----c --3
2
4

7
f -----d --e 4
6
6
3
9
11
--------g -----h -----i
4
4
6

Convert the following angles in radian measure to degree measure, giving answers correct
to two decimal places.
a

1.5

3.75

2.49

3.26

5.32

0.89

6.87

4.55

407

MathsWorld General Mathematics Units 1 & 2

Arc length
Consider a circle with centre O. Points P and Q on
the circumference of the circle divide it into two arcs
as shown, a major arc and a minor arc. The length
of an arc is therefore a part of the circumference of a
circle and is proportional to the angle subtended at the
centre. For example, an angle of 270 gives an arc length
which is three-quarters of the circumference of the circle.

major arc

P
r
minor arc

O
Q

The circumference of a circle is given by C = 2 r and we have seen that there are 2 radians
in a full circle.
Let arc PQ have length l units and let POQ = radians. As the length of the arc is
proportional to the angle it subtends at the centre, it follows that
l

--- = -----P
C
2
Warning
l

--------- = -----In this formula for arc length, is the


l

2r
2
O
angle measure at the centre in radians.
r

l = ------ 2 r
Always convert any angle given in
Q
2
degree format to radians before using
= r
mensuration formulae.
So the length of the arc is given by l = r .

Exa mple 4
A circle has radius 8 cm. An arc of the circle subtends an angle of 60 at the centre of the
circle. Calculate the length of the arc correct to two decimal places.

S o lu tio n
To use l = r , we need to express the angle in radians. We should recognise 60 as a special

angle; in radians, it is --- . (Alternatively, use the conversion method of example 2.)
3
l = r

= 8 --3
8
= -----3
= 8.38 (correct to 2 dp)
The length of the arc is 8.38 cm.

Exa mple 5
Find the angle subtended at the centre of a circle of radius 7 cm by an arc of length 18 cm,
expressing the answer in degrees correct to two decimal places.

S o lu tio n
Substitute the given values into l = r .
l = r
18 = 7
18
= -----7

408

chapter

Trigonometric ratios and applications

10

This is the angle in radians; we need to convert it to degrees.


18
180
Using 1 = ------------ , multiply both sides by ------ .
7

18
18 180
------ = ------ -----------7

7
= 147.33 (correct to 2 dp)
So the angle subtended by the arc is 147.33.

10.5

exercise 10.5

continued

5 Find the length of an arc that subtends an angle of 70 at the centre of a circle of radius
10 cm, giving the answer correct to two decimal places.
6 A goat is tethered to a post by a rope 18 m long. If the goat moves so that it always keeps
the rope taut, calculate correct to the nearest cm how far it travels when the rope sweeps
through an angle of 80.
7 An arc of a circle of radius 98 mm subtends an angle of 55 at the centre of the circle. Find:
a

the length of this minor arc, correct to two decimal places.

the length of the corresponding major arc, correct to two decimal places.

8 The length of an arc of a circle is 8.5 cm and it subtends an angle of 65 at the circles
centre. Calculate the circles radius, correct to two decimal places.
9 The minute hand of a clock is 30 cm long. How far does its tip travel in 25 minutes?
10 Find the angle subtended at the centre of a circle of radius 6 cm by an arc of length 14 cm,
expressing the answer in degrees correct to two decimal places.

Area of a circle sector


Consider a circle with centre O and points P and Q on its circumference.
Two sectors are formed: the shaded area is the minor sector POQ and
the unshaded area is the major sector POQ. The area of either sector
is proportional to the angle it subtends at the centre of the circle.
Let A be the area of the minor sector POQ and let POQ = radians.
Recall that the area of a circle is r 2. As the area of the sector is
proportional to the angle it subtends at the centre, it follows that
A

-------2- = -----2
r

A = ------ r 2
2
1
= --- r 2
2
1
So the area of the sector is given by A = --- r 2 .
2

major sector

r
Q

minor sector

409

MathsWorld General Mathematics Units 1 & 2

Exa mple 6
Find the area of a sector which subtends an angle of 45 at the centre of a circle of radius
10 cm. Give the answer correct to two decimal places.

S o lu tio n
1
To use A = --- r 2 , we need to express the angle in radians. We should recognise 45 as a
2

special angle; in radians, it is --- . (Alternatively, use the conversion method of example 2.)
4
1
A = --- r 2
2
1

= --- 10 2 --4
2
= 39.27 (correct to 2 dp)
So the area of the sector is 39.27 cm2.

Exa mple 7
Using the information on the diagram, calculate the radius of the
circle, correct to one decimal place.

S o lu tio n

GC 1.5
CAS 1.5

110

1
To use A = --- r 2 , we need to express the angle in radians.
2
Use the method of example 2, or just use a graphics calculator
in Radian mode as shown in the earlier tip (see screenshot).

Area of sector = 120 cm2

1
A = --- r 2
2
1
120 = --- r 2 1.91986
2
120 2
2
r = --------------------1.91986
= 125.00897
r = 125.00897
= 11.2 (correct to 1 dp)
So the radius is 11.2 cm correct to one decimal place.

Area of a circle segment


Consider a circle with centre O and points P and Q
on its circumference. The first diagram shows that
two segments are formed: the shaded area is the
minor segment cut off by the chord PQ and the
unshaded area is the major segment cut off by the
chord PQ. From the second diagram, we see that
the area of the minor segment can be found by
subtracting the area of triangle POQ from the area
of the sector POQ.

410

major segment

O
r
P

Q
minor segment

r
Q

chapter

Trigonometric ratios and applications

10

Let A be the area of the minor segment and let POQ = radians. Recall that the area of a
1
1
triangle is --- ab sin . In this case, a = b = r, so the area of triangle POQ is --- r 2 sin .
2
2
A = area of minor sector POQ area of POQ
1
1
= --- r 2 --- r 2 sin
2
2
1
= --- r 2 ( sin )
2
1
So the area of the segment is given by A = --- r 2 ( sin )
2

10.5

Exa mple 8
A chord subtends an angle of 50 at the centre of a circle of radius 8 cm. Calculate the area
of the minor segment cut off by the chord.

S o lu tio n
GC 1.5, 1.6
CAS 1.5, 1.6

1
To use A = --- r 2 ( sin ) , we need to express the angle
2
in radians. Use the method of example 2, or just use
a graphics calculator in Radian mode as shown in the
earlier tip (see screenshot at right).
1
A = --- r 2 ( sin )
2
1
= --- 8 2 ( 0.87266 sin 0.87266 )
2
= 3.41 (correct to 2 dp)
So the area of the sector is 3.41 cm2.

tip
You can express the angle
in degrees for the sine part
of the calculation if you wish.
This screenshot shows the
calculation of A in example 8
in two ways.
Although the calculator is in
Radian mode, adding the
degree sign overrides the mode and the calculator correctly finds sin 50. The answers are
slightly different since .87266 has rounding error, whereas 50 is exact.

Exa mple 9
An arc AB of length 22 cm is drawn on a circle of radius 12 cm. Find:
a the angle subtended at the centre of the circle by the arc AB, giving the answer in:
i radians.

ii degrees.

b the area of the minor segment cut off by the chord AB, correct to 2 decimal places.

411

MathsWorld General Mathematics Units 1 & 2

S o lu tio n
a Substitute the given values into l = r where is in radians.
l = r
22 = 12
11
= -----6
This is the angle in radians.

11
180
To convert it to degrees, use 1 = ------------ and multiply both sides by ------ .
6

11
11 180
------ = ------ -----------
6
6
= 105.04 (correct to 2 dp)

CD10.4
MENSURAT
GC program

So the angle subtended by the arc is:


11
11 c
i ------ radians (or -------- ); or
6
6
ii 105.04
b Use the formula for area of a segment:
1
A = --- r 2 ( sin )
2
1
11
11
= --- 12 2 ------ sin ------
6
2
6
= 62.47 (correct to 2 dp)
So the area of the minor segment is 62.47 cm2.

tip
The MENSURAT program can be
used to check these answers.

exercise 10.5

continued

11 Find the area of a sector which subtends an angle of 36 at the centre of a circle of radius
11 cm. Give the answer correct to two decimal places.
12 An arc of length 125 mm is drawn on a circle of radius 80 mm. Find the area of the
corresponding sector.
13 A sector of a circle has an area of 205 cm2 and makes an angle of 64 at the centre of a
circle. Calculate the radius of the circle correct to two decimal places.
14 The hour hand of a clock is 6 cm long. Find the total area it sweeps out in 3 hours, correct
to two decimal places.
15 A slice of pizza is in the shape of a sector of a circle,
whose radius is 8 cm.
If there are 8 equal slices cut from a whole pizza, find:
a

the angle in degrees made at the centre of the circle.

the length of the curved edge of the pizza slice.

the area of this slice of pizza.

16 A sector of a circle has an area of 185 cm2 and the circle has a radius of 9 cm.
Find the angle made at the centre of the circle, in degrees and minutes.

412

chapter

Trigonometric ratios and applications

10

17 In a circle of radius 305 mm, calculate the area of the minor segment whose arc subtends
an angle of 88 at the centre of the circle. Give your answer correct to one decimal place.

10.5

18 Calculate the area of the segment of a circle of radius 4 cm that has an arc length of 16 cm.

Numbersense with the spence

18

If there are 18 or more people at a party, then there must be either a group of
4 people who all know each other or a group of 4 complete strangers.

SAC

analysis task 3
location, location, location
CD10.5

This analysis task involves the use of measurements collected by a geographical surveyor.
A surveyors job uses many of the methods of geometry and trigonometry.

Location, location, location


SAC analysis task

Surveying land can be a very difficult task. An error in calculations can cost someone
their property. With this in mind the techniques and methods a surveyor uses to measure
land need to be as accurate as possible.
There are two main techniques a surveyor uses to measure a section of land. They are:
.

traverse surveying

radial surveying.

Traverse surveying
The technique of traverse surveying involves a
measured line that stretches from one side of
the block of land being measured to the other.
This is called the traverse line. Then the
distance of all corners or major features of the
block of land at a 90 angle to the traverse line
are measured. It is assumed that the boundaries
of the land are all straight edges.
An example of a surveyors sketch for a
traverse survey is shown.

A
5

15

12

10

30

15

50
65

A
5m 17m

13

10 m

2
12 m

70
B

15 m

10 m

A surveyors sketch can be used to create a


scale diagram as shown.
As we can see in the diagram the traverse
line is AB.
The length of the traverse line in the surveyors
sketch is 70 m.

20 m

15 m
5

In the scale map the total of the section lengths of the


traverse line is 70 m. The block of land comprises 7 shapes:
3 to the left and 4 to the right. There are 4 triangles and 3 trapeziums.

15 m
13 m
5m 4
B

413

MathsWorld General Mathematics Units 1 & 2

Part 1
A surveyor has taken measurements of a block of land for a farmer in country Victoria.
He has used the technique of traverse survey. His sketch is shown
(all measurements are in metres).
a Draw a scale diagram on A4 paper for the surveyors sketch using the
scale 1 : 500 (1 cm = 5 m).
b Look at the shape of the block of land that has been drawn.
How many shapes make up this block of land? Number and
name them, as in the example above.
c Find the area of each shape, and hence the total area of the
farmers block of land to the nearest m2.
d Find the perimeter of the farmers block using the shapes identified
in question b, correct to the nearest m.

A
7

16

29

21

17

38

37

62

70

19

95

11

110

e Complete a table of your results from question d using the following headings.
Shape number

Length of boundary edges (calculated)

1
2
.
.
Total perimeter of block

f Using your scale diagram, measure the lengths of each boundary edge with a ruler and
convert the measured lengths in cm to the actual lengths in m.
Add these measurements to the previous table in a new column and use them to give
an estimate for the total perimeter of the block
Shape number

Length of boundary edges


(calculated)

Length of boundary edges


(measured)

1
2
.
.
Total perimeter of block

g Compare and comment on any differences or similarities between the calculated and
measured values that lead to the perimeter. Give reasons for your observations.

Radial surveying
The technique of radial surveying involves a chosen central point in the block of land.
A surveyor then measures the distance and the bearing of each corner or feature of the
section of land.

414

chapter

Trigonometric ratios and applications

10
10.5

An example of the surveyors sketch for a radial survey is illustrated below left. From this
a scale diagram can be drawn (below right). Using the gathered information it would look
like this. Note that this method divides the block into triangular shapes.
N

A
N

E
45 m
303

37 m
047

E
104

D
50 m
255

57 47
48
D

52 m
C 202

53

42 m B
122

75
O
80
B

Part 2
The farmer in country Victoria needs the
surveyors services once more. The surveyor
uses the technique of radial surveying on
another block of land. His sketch is shown
opposite.

F
80 m
346

E
93 m
293

N
A
76 m
035

B
112 m
082

h Draw a scale diagram on A4 paper of the


surveyors sketch using the scale 1 : 1000
(1 cm = 10 m).
D
i Look at the shape of the block of land that
40 m
C
195
has been drawn. How many triangles make
84 m
up this block of land? Number them.
168
j Find the area of each triangle, and hence the total area of the farmers block of land to
the nearest m2.
k Find the perimeter of the farmers block using the triangles identified in question i,
correct to the nearest m.
l Complete a table of your results from question k using the following headings.
Triangle number

Length of boundary edges (calculated)

1
2
.
.
Total perimeter of block

415

MathsWorld General Mathematics Units 1 & 2

m Using your scale diagram, measure the lengths of each boundary edge with a ruler and
convert the measured lengths in cm to the actual lengths in m.
Add these measurements to the previous table in a new column and use them to give
an estimate for the total perimeter of the block.
Triangle number

Length of boundary edges


(calculated)

Length of boundary edges


(measured)

1
2
.
.
Total perimeter of block

n Compare and comment on any differences or similarities between the calculated and
measured values that lead to the perimeter. Give reasons for your observations.

modelling task
dam it
CD10.6

SAC

Dam it
SAC modelling task

In a dry country such as Australia, farm dams are part of the rural lifeblood of rural.
Knowing the volume of water in a dam at any given time is important for such things as
planning the numbers and distribution of livestock, and estimating when the supply is likely
to run out if there are drought conditions. In general, dams do not have depth markers so
a method is needed that can use physically observable signs. One readily available piece
of data is the distance the water level has receded from its position when the dam is full
a distance obtained simply by measuring the steps taken to walk from the top of the dam
directly to the current water level. The challenge then is to estimate the volume of water
in a dam from this information, and the known overall dimensions of a dam.
In addition to feeding stock, or providing water for irrigation, dams lose water through
evaporation, and although the evaporation rate varies throughout the year with changes in
climatic conditions, rough daily rates can be calculated by dividing annual rates by 365.
Published annual evaporation rates (cm/year) vary from less than 80 cm in western
Tasmania to more than 340 cm in the desert regions of Western Australia and Northern
Territory. Values in Victoria vary from about 140 cm in the south to 180 cm in the north.
This problem investigates ways of estimating the volume of water remaining in a dam of
which the design enables the use of basic mensuration formulae. By specifying a
geographical location for the dam (e.g. northern Victoria) the evaporation rate can be
included to modify the calculations. Implications then follow if the dam is to serve a
specified herd, for example under drought conditions.

416

Chapter review

chapter

Trigonometric ratios and applications

10

Summary
Trigonometric ratios of right-angled triangles
.

O
A
O
For any right-angled triangle sin = ---- , cos = ---- , tan = ---H
H
A

Forms for angles


.

Angles are usually expressed in decimal degree form or in degrees and minutes, where
there are 60 in one degree.

Applications of trigonometry
Angles of elevation and depression
.

Angles of elevation and depression are measured from


the horizontal.

The angle of elevation and depression are equal because


they are alternate angles.

Bearings

angle of depression

angle of elevation

Bearings are a measure used to represent the direction of one object from another.

Bearings can be expressed as true bearings measured in a clockwise direction from north,
or as compass/conventional bearings measured first from north or south, then in the
direction of east or west.

When answering questions involving bearings it is very important to always draw the
compass points N, S, E, W together with clearly labelled diagrams.

Non right-angled triangles


.

With non right-angled triangles, it is useful to label the three


B
vertices with uppercase letters, A, B and C and then label the
sides opposite these with the corresponding lowercase letters,
a
a, b and c.
c
For a triangle ABC, the sine rule is given by
a
b
c
------------- = ------------ = -----------sin A
sin B
sin C
A
C
b
It is used to find unknown lengths and angles when given:
a two angles and one side length
a two side lengths and an angle opposite one of the sides.
For a triangle ABC, the cosine rule is given by a2 = b2 + c2 2bc cos A. It is used to find
unknown lengths and angles when given:
a
a

all three side lengths


two side lengths and the included angle.

Alternative forms for the cosine rule are:


b2 = a2 + c2 2ac cos B, or c2 = a2 + b2 2ab cos C

417

MathsWorld General Mathematics Units 1 & 2

Area of a triangle
.

If two sides of a triangle and the included angle are given then we can use the following
rule to find the area.
1
1
1
Area = --- bc sin A = --- ac sin B = --- ab sin C
2
2
2
If all three side lengths of the triangle are known then Herons formula can be used to find
the area of the triangle.
1
Area of = s ( s a ) ( s b ) ( s c ) where s = --- ( a + b + c )
2

Circle mensuration
Radian measure of an angle
.

A radian is the angle subtended at the centre of a unit circle by an arc of length one unit.

360 = 2 c; 180 = c. The symbol c is used to indicate radian measure, but is often
omitted when the meaning is clear.

To convert between radians and degrees:

1 = --------180
180
1c = -----------

Arc length
.

Two radii divide the circumference of a circle into two arcs


the minor and major arc.

major arc

Arc length is given by l = r , where r is the radius of the


circle and is the angle measure at the centre in radians.

P
r
O

minor arc
Q

Area of a sector
.

Two radii divide the circle into two sectors, the minor sector and
the major sector.
1
The area of the minor sector is given by A = --- r 2 , where r is the
2
radius of the circle and is the angle measure at the centre in radians.

major sector

O
r

minor sector

Area of a segment
.

418

A chord divides the area of a circle into two parts, the minor and
major segment.
1
The area of a segment is given by A = --- r 2 ( sin ) , where r is
2
the radius of the circle and is the angle measure at the centre
in radians.

major segment

O
P

Q
minor segment

chapter

Trigonometric ratios and applications

10

Revision questions
Short answer
1 Lim walks 4 km due north, then 5 km due east. Find:
a his bearing, to the nearest degree, from his starting point.
b the length of the last leg of the journey if Lim decides to head straight back to his
starting point.
2 A ladder 5 m long rests against a vertical wall, with the foot of the ladder 1.8 m from the
base of the wall. Calculate the angle the ladder makes with the wall correct to two decimal
places.
7.5 cm

3 In the triangle, find the value of the pronumeral


correct to one decimal place.

52

37
x cm

4 In a triangle ABC, a = 8, A = 110 and B = 35. Find the unknown angle and lengths in
this triangle.
5 From the top of a lighthouse 85 m high, Frank observes a boat at an angle of depression
of 3322. If the foot of the lighthouse is at sea level, how far is the boat from the base of
the lighthouse, correct to the nearest metre?
6 In ABC, b = 5, c = 7 and A = 5842. Find the value of a.
7 Calculate the angle subtended by an arc 9 cm long on a circle of radius 3 cm in:
a radians.

b degrees.

8 A triangular flowerbed has side lengths of 4 m, 5 m and 6 m. Find the area of this
flowerbed.
9 Three towns, Diamond, Ruby and Emerald, are famous for each of their stones. Ruby is
20 km from Diamond on a bearing of 050. Emerald is 28 km from Ruby on a bearing of
260. A jeweller is making his monthly trip to buy stones to make his jewellery. Calculate
the total distance covered by the jeweller if he visits all three towns, starting and ending
at Diamond.
10 Two vertical goal posts of heights 5 m and 7 m stand apart on horizontal ground. If the
angle of elevation from the top of the shorter goal post to the top of the taller goal post is
26, find the distance between the two goal posts correct to the nearest metre.
11 In triangle ABC, B = 55, b = 15, c = 18. Calculate the two possible values for a.
12 Calculate the area of the shaded region
shown in the diagram to the nearest
square centimetre.

35 cm

120
P

419

MathsWorld General Mathematics Units 1 & 2

13 The arc of a circle with radius 5.2 cm subtends an angle of 82 at the centre. Find:
a the length of the arc.
b the area of the sector formed by the arc and two radii.
14 The area of a sector of a circle is 50 cm2 and its bounding arc subtends an angle of 65 at
the centre. Calculate the perimeter of the sector correct to two decimal places.

Extended response
1 A yacht travels 3 km from a point A on a bearing of 110 to a point B and then travels for
4 km on a bearing of 168 to a point C.
a Draw a clearly labelled diagram representing the situation.
b How far south is the yacht from point A?
c How far east is the yacht from point A?
d What is the direct distance between A and C?
e Calculate the bearing of A from C.
f If the yacht travels back to point A from point C, find the area that is enclosed by the
yachts course.
2 Examine the diagram. Using the information provided find:
a the circumference of the circle.
b the angle in:

O
20 cm

i degrees
ii radians.

15 cm
P

c the length of the minor arc PQ and of the major arc PQ.
d the area of the minor sector OPQ.
e the area of the shaded section.
3 A spy plane is flying above the ocean at an altitude of 3000 m. The sensors of the spy plane
detect an enemy submarine travelling on the waters surface directly in front of the spy
plane at an angle of depression of 27.
a Draw a diagram to represent the situation.
b If the plane is travelling at 500 m/min, how long before the plane is directly above the
enemy submarine?
c Three minutes after the spy plane passes over the enemy submarine, the enemy
submarine detects the spy plane. At what angle of elevation is the spy plane from the
enemy submarine at that instant?

CD
10.710.9
A trio of tests
Chapter tests

420

The spy plane has signalled a friendly submarine to intercept the enemy submarine it
originally detected. The friendly submarine is behind the enemy submarine at a depth of
1750 m and is a direct distance of 3850 m from the enemy submarine.
d Draw a diagram to represent the situation.
e At what angle of elevation should the second submarine rise to come up just behind the
enemy submarine?