A

Q

B
P
θ

2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2
; ; .
a b c
l m n
a b c a b c a b c
= ± = ± = ±
+ + + + + +

where +ve or – ve sign is to be taken in all the three.
(b) A line can have many sets of direction ratio which are proportional to each other.
(c) If ( )
1 1 1
P , , x y z and Q( )
2 2 2
, , x y z are any two points, then direction-ratios of PQ

(or line) PQ are
( )
2 1 2 1 2 1
, , . x x y y z z − − −
(d) Angle between two vectors (or line) whose direction-ratios are ( )
1 1 1
, , a b c and ( )
2 2 2
, , a b c is given
by

1 2 1 2 1 2
2 2 2 2 2 2
1 1 1 2 2 2
cos .
.
a a b b c c
a b c a b c
θ
+ +
=
+ + + +

(i) If these are
1 2 1 2 1 2
' ' ; 0. a a b b c c ⊥ + + = (ii) If these are
1 1 1
2 2 2
' ' ; .
a b c
a b c
= =
7. Projection
Projection of a line joining the points ( ) ( )
1 1 1 2 2 2
, , and , , P x y z Q x y z on another line AB whose direction
cosines are l, m and n. If the line segment PQ makes angle θ with the line AB then
Projection of PQ is P'Q', P'Q' ∴ ( ) ( ) ( )
2 1 2 1 2 1
cos cos cos x x y y z z α β γ = − + − + −
( ) ( ) ( )
2 1 2 1 2 1
. x x l y y m z z n = − + − + −
PLANE
1. (i) General equation
If a, b, c are direction-ratios of normal to the plane, then the equation of plane in Cartesian
form is 0 ax by cz d + + + =
In vector form general equation is
. ; where r n p n =
  
is a vector ⊥ to the plane.
(ii) Equation of plane in normal form
If l, m, n be the direction cosines of the normal to a plane and p be the length of the perpendicular
from the origin on the plane, then the equation of the plane is . lx my nz p + + =
In vector form normal equation of plane is
ˆ r n p ⋅ =

where ˆ n is a unit vector ⊥ to the plane.
(iii) Equation of plane in intercepts form
If a plane makes intercepts a, b, c on the axes of coordinates, its equation is 1.
x y z
a b c
+ + =
(iv) Equation of a plane through a given point
P( )
1 1 1
, , x y z and having ( ) , , a b c as direction-ratios of normal is given by :
( ) ( ) ( )
1 1 1
0 a x x b y y c z z − + − + − = Cartesian form
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Or
( ) 0; isavectornormal toplane. r a n n − ⋅ =
   
Vector form
where a

is the position vector of a point in the plane.
(v) Equation of a plane through three given points
The equation of the plane passing through three non-collinear points ( ) ( )
1 1 1 2 2 2
, , , , , x y z z y z
and ( )
3 3 3
, , x y z is
( ) ( ) ( )
( ) ( ) ( )
( ) ( ) ( )
1 1 1
2 1 2 1 2 1
3 1 3 1 3 1
0.
x x y y z z
x x y y z z
x x y y z z
− − −
− − − =
− − −

2. Equation of Systems of Planes
(i) The equation 0 ax by cz k + + + = represents a system of plane parallel to the plane
0 ax by cz d + + + = , k being parameter.
Or
Vector form . r n k =
 

(ii) The equation 0 ax by cz k + + + = , represents a system of planes perpendicular to the
line .
x y z
a b c
= =
(iii) The equation ( ) ( )
1 1 1 1 2 2 2 2
0 a x b y c z d k a x b y c z d + + + + + + + = .represents a system of planes
passing through the intersection of the planes
1 1 1 1 2 2 2 2
0,and 0. a x b y c z d a x b y c z d + + + = + + + =
k being a parameter.
(iv) The equation ( ) ( ) ( )
1 1 1
0 A x x B y y C z z − + − + − = represents a system of planes passing through
the point ( )
1 1 1
, , x y z where , , A B C are parameters.
3. Angle Between Two Planes
The angle θ between the planes
1 1 1 1 2 2 2 2
0, 0, a x b y c z d a x b y c z d + + + = + + + = is given by
( ) ( )
1 2 1 2 1 2
2 2 2 2 2 2
1 1 1 2 2 2
cos
a a b b c c
a b c a b c
θ
+ +
=
+ + + +
4. Parallelism and Perpendicularity of Two Planes
The planes
1 1 1 1 2 2 2 2
0, 0 a x b y c z d a x b y c z d + + + = + + + = are parallel if and only if
1 1 1
2 2 2
;
a b c
a b c
= = and
perpendicular if and only if
1 2 1 2 1 2
0 a a b b c c + + =
5. Two Sides of a Plane
Two points ( ) ( )
1 1 1 2 2 2
, , and , , P x y z Q x y z lie on the same or different sides of the plane 0 ax by cz d + + + =
according as
1 1 1 2 2 2
and ax by cz d ax by cz d + + + + + + are of the same or of different signs.
6. Length of the Perpendicular from a Point to a Plane
The perpendicular distance of the point ( )
1 1 1
, , x y z from the plane lx my nz p + + =
1 1 1
is , p lx my nz − − − where l, m, n are direction cosines of the normal to the plane and p is the length of
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It is called symmetric form of the line.
Note : Any point on this line is ( )
1 1 1
, , x a y b z c λ λ λ + + + , where λ is a parameter.
2. Equations of line through two given points
Vector form. Let the points on line are A( )
1 1 1
, , x y z and B( )
2 2 2
, , x y z and their position vectors are
1
a

and
2
a

respectively. Then equation of line is given by ( )
1 2 1
. r a a a λ = + −
   

Cartesian form
1 1 1
2 1 2 1 2 1
.
x x y y z z
x x y y z z
− − −
= =
− − −
The coordinates of a variable point on AB can be expressed in terms of a parameterλ in the form
2 1 2 1 2 1
, , ,
1 1 1
x x y y z z
x y z
λ λ λ
λ λ λ
+ + +
= = =
+ + +

λ being any real number different from -1. In fact, (x, y, z) are the coordinates of the point which divides
the join of A and B in the ratio λ :1.
3. Changing unsymmetrical form to symmetrical form
The unsymmetrical form of a line
0, 0 ax by cz d a x b y c z d ′ ′ ′ ′ + + + = + + + =
can be changed to symmetrical form as follows :
.
'
bd b d da d a
x y
z
ab a b ab a b
bc b c ca c a ab a b
′ ′ ′ ′ − −
− −
′ ′ ′ ′ − −
= =
′ ′ ′ ′ ′ − − −

4. Angle between two lines
Vector form : Let the lines be
1 1 1
r a b λ = +

 
and
2 2 2
, r a b µ = +

 
then
1 2
1 2
.
cos .
.
b b
b b
θ =
 
 
If lines are (i) parallel
1 2
b kb =
 
and (ii) perpendicular
1 2
. 0 b b =
 
.
Cartesian form : Let the lines are
1 1 1 2 2 2
1 1 1 2 2 2
x x y y z z x x y y z z
and
a b c a b c
− − − − − −
= = = = then
1 2 1 2 1 2
2 2 2 2 2 2
1 1 1 2 2 2
cos .
.
a a b b c c
a b c a b c
θ
+ +
=
+ + + +

If these are (i) parallel
1 1 1
2 2 2
a b c
a b c
= = (ii) perpendicular
1 2 1 2 1 2
0 a a b b c c + + = .
5. To find equation of a line parallel to given line
Vector form : Given equation is
1 1
r a b λ = +

 
.
Equation of a line parallel to it through point B( )
2 2 1
is a r a b µ = +

  
.
Cartesian form : Let the given line be
1 1 1
x x y y z z
a b c
− − −
= = then a line parallel to it and passing
through point B( )
2 2 2
, , x y z has equation
2 2 2
.
x x y y z z
a b c
− − −
= =
6. To find equation of line perpendicular to two given lines
Vector form
Let given lines be:
1 1 1 2 2 2
and . r a b r a b λ µ = + = +
 
   

A line perpendicular to them is
3 3
r a b α = +

 
where
1 3
. 0 b b =
 
and
2 3 3 1 2
. 0or . b b b b b = = ×
    

Cartesian form
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Let given lines be :
1 1 1
1 1 1
x x y y z z
a b c
− − −
= = and
2 2 2
2 2 2
x x y y z z
a b c
− − −
= =
Then a line through ( )
3 3 3
, , x y z and ⊥ to given lines is:
3 3 3
x x y y z z
a b c
− − −
= =
where
1 1 1
0 aa bb cc + + = and
2 2 2
0 aa bb cc + + = .
Find a, b, c by rule of cross multiplication.
7. To find whether two given lines cut or not
Vector form. Let given lines be
1 1 1 2 2 2
and r a b r a b λ µ = + = +
 
   
.
Since r

is the position vector of an arbitrary point on the lines, if these intersect, for some values
of λ and µ these points must coincide i.e.,
1 1 2 2
a b a b λ µ + = +
 
 
. Equate components of
ˆ ˆ ˆ
, , , i j k
Solve any two equations for ‘ λ ’ and ‘ µ ’. Put this value in third equation, if it is satisfied lines
intersect, otherwise not. To find point of intersection put λ (or µ ) in given equation.
Let given lines be
1 1 1
1
1 1 1
:
x x y y z z
L
a b c
λ
− − −
= = = , say and
2 2 2
2
2 2 2
:
x x y y z z
L
a b c
µ
− − −
= = = , say.
Any point on line L
1
is ( )
1 1 1 1 1 1
, , x a y b z c λ λ µ + + + and on line L
2
is ( )
2 2 2 2 2 2
, , x a y b z c µ µ µ + + + .
If lines intersect these two points must coincide for some value of λ and µ . Equate the corresponding
co-ordinates then proceed as in vector form.
8. To find foot of perpendicular from a point on a line
Vector form
Let given point be A( )
1
a

and line is . r a b λ = +

 

Position vector of any point on line is P
( )
. a b λ +



Then ( ) ( ) = Position vectorof P Position vectorof A AP −

.
If P is foot of perpendicular, then AP. =0 b

find λ .
Put the value of λ in a b λ +


to get foot of ‘ ⊥’. Length of AP ⊥=

Equation of ‘ ⊥’ is
( ) 1
AP . r a µ = +

 

Cartesian form
Let A( )
2 2 2
, , x y z be given point and
1 1 1
x x y y z z
a b c
− − −
= = be the line.
Let
1 1 1
x x y y z z
a b c
λ
− − −
= = = , say.
Any point on this line is P( )
1 1 1
, , x a y b z c λ λ λ + + + .
Direction-ratios of ( ) ( ) ( ) ( )
1 2 1 2 1 2
, , AP x a x y b y z c z λ λ λ = + − + − + −
If P is foot of ⊥ form A on line, then use ‘
1 2 1 2 1 2
0 a a b b c c + + = ’ where ( )
1 1 1
, , a b c and ( )
2 2 2
, , a b c are
direction-ratios of given line and AP respectively.
Find λ and put in P to get foot of ⊥.
Length of perpendicular =AP and equation of perpendicular is :
2 2 2
2 2 2
.
x x y y z z
a b c
− − −
= =
9. Line of shortest distance:
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If l
1
and l
2
are two skew lines, then the straight line which is perpendicular to each of these two non-
intersecting lines is called the “Line of shortest distance “There is one and only one line perpendicular to
each of lines
1 2
and l l .”
10. Shortest distance between two skew lines
Vector form
Let two lines be
1 1 1 2 2 2
and r a b r a b λ µ = + = +
 
   
then
( )
( )
2 1 1 2
1 2
.
Shortest Distance
a a b b
b b
− ×
=
×
 
 
  .
Cartesian form
Let two skew lines be,
1 1 1 2 2 2
1 1 1 2 2 2
and
x x y y z z x x y y z z
l m n l m n
− − − − − −
= = = =
Therefore, the shortest distance between the lines is given by
( ) ( ) ( )
2 1 2 1 2 1
1 1 1
2 2 2
2 2 2
1 2 2 1 1 2 1 2 1 2 1 2
x x y y z z
l m n
l m n
d
m n m n n l l n l m ml
− − −
=
− + − + −
Method of parallel plane
When one of the lines is in the general form and the other is in the symmetrical form
Let
1 1 1 1
2 2 2 2
0
0
a x b y c z d
a x b y c z d
+ + + = 

+ + + =

…(1)
and
1 1 1
x x y y z z
a b c
− − −
= = …(2)
are two equations of straight lines
Use the following steps to find distance between these lines
Step I : Find the equation of a plane which contain line (1)
i.e. ( )
1 1 1 1 2 2 2 2
0 a x b y c z d a x b y c z d λ + + + + + + + = …(*)
Step II : Find ‘ λ ’ so that the plane (*) is parallel to the line (2)
Step III : Find the distance of the point ( )
1 1 1
, , x y z from the plane (*)
This is the distance between these two lines.
Foot of perpendicular from a point ( ) , , A α β γ to a given plane ax + by + cz + d = 0.
If AP be the perpendicular from A to the given plane, then it is parallel to the normal to the plane, so that
its equation is
( ) ,
x y z
r say
a b c
α β γ − − −
= = =
Any point P on it is ( ) , , ar br cr α β γ + + + . If it lies on the given plane and we find the value of r and
hence the point P.
11. Image of a point in a plane
Let P and Q be two points and let L be a plane such that
(i) Line PQ is perpendicular to the plane L , and
(ii) Mid-point of PQ lies on the plane L .
Then either of the point is the image of the other in the plane L .
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O
C
P
c

r

a

( )
1 1 1
, , P x y z
0 ax by cz d + + + =

R
( )
1 1 1
, , x ar y br z cr + + +
Q
π
θ
90 θ −
12. To find the image of a point in a given plane, we proceed as follows
(i) Write the equations of the line passing through P and normal to
the given plane as
1 1 1
x x y y z z
a b c
− − −
= =
Write the co-ordinates of image Q as ( )
1 1 1
, , x ar y br z cr + + + .
(ii) Find the co-ordinates of the mid-point R of PQ.
(iii) Obtain the value of r by putting the co-ordinates of R in the
equation of the plane.
(iv) Put the value of r in the co- ordinates of Q.
13. Angle between a line and a plane
Let
1 1 1
x x y y z z
a b c
− − −
= = be a line and
1 1 1 1
0 a x b y c z d + + + = be a plane and
θ the angle between them
then ( )
1 1 1
2 2 2 2 2 2
1 1 1
cos 90 sin
aa bb cc
a b c a b c
θ θ
+ +
− = =
+ + + +
Or
If plane is . r n q =
 
and line is r a m λ = +
  
then
.
sin .
.
n m
n m
θ =
 
 
Note :
(a) Plane and straight line will be parallel if
1 1 1
0 a a bb c c + + =
(b) Plane and straight line will be perpendicular if
1 1 1
.
a b c
a b c
= =
(c) The line may lie in the plane if
1 1 1
0 a a bb c c + + = and
1 1 1 1 1 1
0. a x b y c z + + =
SPHERE
1. Equation of a sphere having ( ) C c

as it’s centre and a as it’s radius:
r c a − =
 
(Vector form)
Cartesian form: Let center be ( )
1 1 1
, , C x y z and radius =a.
Then equation is: ( ) ( ) ( )
2 2 2
2
1 1 1
. x x y y z z a − + − + − = …(1)
If the centre is at the origin, then equation (1) takes the form
2 2 2 2
x y z a + + =
which is known as the standard form of the equation of the sphere.
2. General equation of sphere
The general equation of a sphere is
2 2 2
2 2 2 0 x y z ux vy wz d + + + + + + = with centre ( ) , , u v w − − − i.e.,
( )
1
2
− coefficient of x ,
( )
1
2
− coefficient of y),
( )
1
2
− (coefficient z) and, radius =
2 2 2
. u v w d + + −
Equation in sphere in various forms
3. Diameter form of the equation of a sphere: If ( ) ( )
1 1 1 2 2 2
, , and , , x y z x y z are the co-ordinates of the
extremities of a diameter of a sphere, then its equation is
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C
P Q
M
( )( ) ( )( ) ( )( )
1 2 1 2 1 2
0. x x x x y y y y z z z z − − + − − + − − =
4. Section of a sphere by a plane
Consider a sphere intersected by a plane. The set of points common to both
sphere is always a circle. The equation of the sphere and the plane taken
together represent the plane section.
Let C be the centre of the sphere and M be the foot of the perpendicular from C
on the plane. Then M is the centre of the circle and radius of the circle is given
by
2 2
. PM CP CM = −
The centre M of the circle is the point of intersection of the plane and line CM
which passes through C and is perpendicular to the given plane.
6. Great circle: The section of a sphere by a plane through the centre of the sphere is a great circle. Its
centre and radius are the same as those of the given sphere.
7. Condition of tangency of a plane to a sphere
A plane touches a given sphere if the perpendicular distance from the centre of the sphere to the plane is
equal to the radius of the sphere. The plane lx my nz p + + = touches the sphere
2 2 2
2 2 2 0 x y z ux vy wz d + + + + + + = If ( ) ( )( )
2
2 2 2 2 2 2
. ul vm wn p l m n u v w d + + − = + + + + −
8. Intersection of straight line and a sphere
Let the equation of the sphere and the straight line be
( )
2 2 2
2 2 2 0 ... 1 x y z ux vy wz d + + + + + + =
and ( ) ,
x y z
r say
l m n
α β γ − − −
= = = …(2)
Any point of on the line (2) is ( ) , , lr mr nr α β γ + + + . If this point lies on the sphere (1) then we have,
( ) ( ) ( ) ( ) ( ) ( )
2 2 2
2 2 2 0 lr mr nr u lr v mr w nr d α β γ α β γ + + + + + + + + + + + + = or
( ) ( ) ( ) ( ) ( )
2 2 2 2 2 2 2
2 2 2 2 0 ... 3 r l m n r l u m v n w u v w d α β γ α β γ α β γ   + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + =  
   
This is a quadratic equation in r and so gives two values of r and therefore the line (2) meets the sphere (1)
in two points which may be real, coincident and imaginary, according as root of (3) are so.
If , , l m n are the actual direction cosines of the line, then
2 2 2
1 l m n + + = and then the equation (3) can be
simplified.
9. Angle of intersection of two spheres
If the angle of intersection of two spheres is a right angle, the sphere are said to be orthogonal.
Condition for orthogonality of two spheres:
Let the equation of the two sphere be
2 2 2
2 2 2 0 x y z ux vy wz d + + + + + + = …(1)
and
2 2 2
2 ' 2 ' 2 ' ' 0 x y z u x v y w z d + + + + + + = …(2)
If the sphere (1) and (2) cut orthogonally, then 2 ' 2 ' 2 ' ', uu vv ww d d + + = + which is the require condition.
Note : Two sphere of radii r
1
and r
2
cut orthogonally, then the radius of the common circle is
1 2
2 2
1 2
.
r r
r r +
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