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Continuous Random Variables and Probability Distributions

Chapter 4
Continuous Random Variables
and Probability Distributions
Fill-in-the-Blank Questions
Section 4.1
1.

A random variable whose set of possible values is an entire interval of numbers is a __________
random variable, as opposed to __________.
ANSWER: continuous, discrete

2.

If X is a continuous random variable, and c is any number, then P(X = c) = __________.


ANSWER: 0

3.

The graph of the probability density function f(x) of the continuous random variable X is often
referred to as the __________ .
ANSWER: density curve

4.

The total area under the grapy of the probability density function f(x) of any continuous random
variable X is always equal to __________ .
ANSWER: 1

5.

A continuous random variable X is uniformly distributed on the interval [0,5], then the probability
density function between 0 and 5 is equal to __________.
ANSWER: .2

6.

If the assembly time for a product is uniformly distributed between 15 to 20 minutes, then the
probability of assembling the product between 16 to 18 minutes is __________.
ANSWER: .4

55

CHAPTER FOUR

Section 4.2
7.

The cumulative distribution function F(x) for a continuous random variable X is the area under the
density curve to the __________ of x.
ANSWER: left

8.

If X is a continuous random variable with probability density function f(x) and cumulative
distribution function F(x) , then at every x at which the derivative F ( x) exists, F ( x) =
__________.
ANSWER: f(x)

9.

Let p be a number between 0 and 1. The (100p)th percentile of the distribution of a continuous
random variable X, denoted by ( p) and __________% lies to the __________.
ANSWER: left, 100 (1-p), right

10.

A continuous distribution is said to be __________ if the graph of its probability density function
to the left of some point is a mirror image of the graph to the right of that point.
ANSWER: symmetric

11.

The expected or mean value of a continuous random variable X with probability density function
f(x) is defined by E ( X ) __________.
x

ANSWER:

x f ( x)dx

Section 4.3
12.

A continuous random variable X is said to have a __________ distribution with parameters


and 2 , where 00 00 and 0 , if the probability density function of X is
f ( x; , )

1
2

e( x )

/ 2 2

ANSWER: normal
13.

The normal distribution with parameter values 0 and 1 is called a __________ normal
distribution.
ANSWER: standard

14.

If Z is a standard normal random variable, then P ( Z 2.0) __________.


ANSWER: .0228

15.

If Z is a standard normal random variable with cumulative distribution function ( z ) , then


(1.65) (1.65) = __________.
ANSWER: .901

56

Continuous Random Variables and Probability Distributions


16.

The 90th percentile of the standard normal distribution is approximately z = __________.


ANSWER: 1.28

17.

The 25th percentile of the standard normal distribution is approximately z = __________.


ANSWER: -.67

18.

In your book, the author used the notation z to denote the value on the measurement axis for
which of the area under the z curve lies to the __________ of z .
ANSWER: right

19.

In terms of the z notation used in your book, z.05 is the __________th percentile of the standard
normal distribution, so z.05 = __________.
ANSWER: 95, 1.645

20.

If the population distribution of a variable is approximately normal, then about __________% of


the values are within one standard deviation of the mean.
ANSWER: 68

21.

In general, as long as the binomial probability histogram is not too skewed, binomial probabilities
can be well approximated by __________ probabilities. In practice, the approximation is adequate
provided that both __________ and __________ are satisfied, where q 1 p .
ANSWER: normal, np 10, nq 10

Section 4.4
22.

The value of the gamma function, ( ), for .50 is __________.


ANSWER:

23.

The expected value of a random variable X having a gamma distribution with parameters and
is E(X) = __________.
ANSWER:

24.

The variance of a random variable X having a gamma distribution with parameters and is
V(X) = __________.
ANSWER: 2

25.

The parameter in the probability density function (pdf), f ( x; , ), of the gamma distribution
is called the __________parameter because values other than 1 either stretch or compress the
pdf in the x direction.
ANSWER: scale

57

CHAPTER FOUR
26.

The value of the gamma function, (n), for n = 5 is __________.


ANSWER: 24

27.

When X is a standard gamma random variable, the cumulative distribution function of X is called
the __________ gamma function.
ANSWER: incomplete

28.

The mean of a random variable X having the exponential distribution with parameter
.5 is __________ .
ANSWER: 2

29.

The standard deviation of a random variable X having the exponential distribution with parameter
.5 is __________ .
ANSWER: 2

30.

The mean of a random variable X having the chi-squared distribution with 3 degrees of freedom is
__________ .
ANSWER: 3

31.

The variance of a random variable X having the chi-squared distribution with 5 degrees of freedom
2
is __________ .
ANSWER: 10

Section 4.5
32.

A nonnegative random variable X is said to have a lognormal distribution if the random variable
Y = ln(X) has a __________ distribution.
ANSWER: normal

33.

If the random variable X is distributed as a standard beta distribution with parameters


2 and 3 , then the mean of X is __________.
ANSWER: .4

34.

Suppose the random variable X has a Weibull distribution with parameters 2 and 10, then
P ( X 15) is approximately __________.
ANSWER: .895

35.

If the random variable Y = ln(X) Is normally distributed with parameters 1 and 2 , then the
expected value of X is approximately __________.
ANSWER: 20.086

58

Continuous Random Variables and Probability Distributions

Section 4.6
36.

An effective graphical method to check if the population distribution is of a specified type (e.g.,
from normal distribution) is to construct what is called a __________.
ANSWER: probability plot

37.

The 90th percentile of a continuous distribution is a number ( p) on the measurement scale such
that the area under the density curve to the __________ of ( p) is .90 and to the __________ is .
10.
ANSWER: left, right

38.

The 20th percentile of the standard normal distribution is approximately __________.


ANSWER: -.84

39.

The fiftieth sample percentile should separate the smallest __________% of the sample from the
largest __________%.
ANSWER: 50, 50

40.

A plot of the n pairs: [100 (i .5) / n] th z percentile, i th smallest observation} on a twodimensional coordinate system is called a __________ plot.
ANSWER: normal probability

41.

The parameters 1 and 2 are said to be __________ and __________ parameters, respectively, if
the cumulative distribution function F(x; 1 , 2 )is a function of (x - 1 ) / 2
ANSWER: location, scale

59

CHAPTER FOUR

Multiple-Choice Questions
Section 4.1
42.

Unquestionably, the most important and useful distribution in probability and statistics is the
A.
B.
C.
D.

binomial distribution
normal distribution
gamma distribution
exponential distribution

ANSWER: B
43.

Which of the following is (are) true is X is a continuous random variable, and f(x) is the
probability density function of X?
b

A. For any two numbers a and b with a b, P(a X b) a f ( x)dx


B.

f ( x) 0

C.

f ( x)dx = area under the entire graph of f(x) = 1

D. All of the above are true


E. Only B and C are true
ANSWER: D
44.

Which of the following statements is an example of a continuous random variable?


A.
B.
C.
D.

The depth of Lake Michigan at a randomly chosen point on the surface


The number of has stations in Detroit
The number of credit hours you have this semester
All of the above

ANSWER: A
45.

If X is a continuous random variable defined on the interval [A,B], and the probability density
function of X is
A x B
1/( B A)
f ( x; A, B )
otherwise
0
then X is said to have
A.
B.
C.
D.

gamma distribution
normal distribution
uniform distribution
Weibull distribution

ANSWER: C

60

Continuous Random Variables and Probability Distributions


46.

If the probability density function of a continuous random variable X is


.5 x
0

f ( x)

0 x2
otherwise

then, P (1 x 1.5) is

A.
B.
C.
D.

.5625
.3125
.1250
.4375

ANSWER: B
47.

If the probability density function of a continuous random variable X is


2
kx
0

f ( x)

0 x2
otherwise

then the value of k is


A.
B.
C.
D.

2
.25
.375
any positive value greater than 2

ANSWER: C
48.

A continuous random variable X is uniformly distributed on the interval [A,B], then the probability
density function between A and B has a value of
A.
B.
C.
D.
E.

1/(A-B)
(A+B)/2
A-B
B-A
A+BX

ANSWER: A
49.

A continuous random variable X is uniformly distributed on the interval [35, 45]. The probability
that X is between 40 and 50 is
A.
B.
C.
D.

.1
.7
.6
.5

ANSWER: D

61

CHAPTER FOUR

Section 4.2
50.

Let X be a continuous random variable with probability density function f(x) and cumulative
distribution function F(x). Then for any two numbers a and b with a<b, which of the following
inequalities is true?
A.
B.
C.
D.

P (a X b) F (a ) F (b)
P ( X a ) 1 F (a )
F ( x) ( x a ) /(b a)
P ( X b) F (b) 1

ANSWER: B
51.

The cumulative distribution function F(x) for a continuous random variable X is defined for every
number x by which of the following inequalities?
A.
B.
C.
D.

F ( x) P( X x)
F ( x) 1 P( X x)
F ( x) P( X x)
F ( x) P( X x) P( X x)

ANSWER: C
52.

Which of the following is true about the median %of a continuous distribution?
A. %is the 50th percentile
B. %is the 75th percentile
C. The area under the density curve to the right of %is larger than the area to the left of %
) 1
D. %satisfies F ( %
ANSWER: A

53.

A continuous distribution whose probability density function f(x) is symmetric has median %
equal to
A.
B.
C.
D.

0
1
f(.5)
the point of symmetry

ANSWER: D
54.

A continuous random variable X is uniformly distributed over the interval [10, 16]. The expected
value of X is
A.
B.
C.
D.

16
13
10
7

ANSWER: B

62

Continuous Random Variables and Probability Distributions


55.

A continuous random variable X is uniformly distributed over the interval [12, 18]. The variance
of X is
A.
B.
C.
D.

15
6
3
9

ANSWER: C

Section 4.3
56.

Which of the following statements are correct?


2
A. The statement that the random variable X is normally distributed with parameters and is

often abbreviated X

: N ( , 2 ) .

2
B. If the random variable X is normally distributed with parameters and , then

E ( X ) and V ( X ) 2 .
C. The graph of any normal probability density function is symmetric about the mean and bellshaped, so the center of the bell (point of symmetry) is both the mean of the distribution and
the median.
2
D. If the random variable X is normally distributed with parameters and , then a large
implies that a value of X far from may well be observed, whereas such a value is quite
unlikely when is small.
E. All of the above statements are correct
ANSWER: E
57.

Which of the following statements are correct?


A. If the random variable X is normally distributed with parameters and , then the mean of
X is and the variance of X is .
B. The cumulative distribution function of any standard normal random variable Z is
P ( Z z ) ( z ).
C. The standard normal distribution does frequently serve as a model for a naturally arising
population.
D. The standard normal probability table can only be used to compute probabilities for normal
random variables with parameters 0 and 1.
E. All of the above statements are correct.
ANSWER: B

58.

Which of the following standard normal probabilities are not correct?


A.
B.
C.
D.

59.

P ( Z 1.25) .8944
P ( Z 1.25) .1056
P ( Z 1.25) .8944
P (1.25 Z 1.25) .7888

ANSWER: A
Which of the following statements about the z notation used in your book is correct?

63

CHAPTER FOUR
A. of the area under the standard normal curve lies to the left of z .
B. 1 of the area under the standard normal curve lies to the right of z .
C. z is the 100 (1 ) th percentile of the standard normal distribution
D. z is the 100 th percentile of the standard normal distribution
ANSWER: C
60.

Which of the following statements about the z notation used in your book is not correct?
A.
B.
C.
D.
E.

The area under the standard normal curve to the right of z is .


The area under the standard normal curve to the left of z is 1 .
The area under the standard normal curve to the right of z is 1 .
The area under the standard normal curve to the left of z is .
All of the above statements are not correct.

ANSWER: D
61.

If X has a normal distribution with mean and standard deviation , and Z is the standard
normal random variable whose cumulative distribution function is P ( Z z ) ( z ) , then which
of the following statements are not correct?
A. Z ( X ) /
B. P (a X b) [(b ) / ] [a ) / ]
C. P ( X a ) 1 [(a ) / ]
D. P ( X b) 1 [(b ) / ]
E. All of the above statements are not correct
ANSWER: C

62.

If the population distribution of a variable is approximately normal, then according to the


empirical rule, which of the following statements are correct?
A.
B.
C.
D.

Roughly 68% of the values are within one standard deviation of the mean.
Roughly 95% of the values are within two standard deviations of the mean.
Roughly 99.7% of the values are within three standard deviations of the mean.
All of the above statements are correct.

ANSWER: D
63.

If X is a normally distributed random variable with a mean of 10 and standard deviation of 4, then
the probability that X is between 6 and 16 is
A.
B.
C.
D.
E.

.9332
.7745
.6587
.0668
.8413

ANSWER: B

64

Continuous Random Variables and Probability Distributions


64.

If X is a normally distributed random variable with a mean of 25 and a standard deviation of 8,


then the probability that X exceeds 20 is approximately
A.
B.
C.
D.
E.

.7357
.2643
.6250
.3750
None of the above answers are correct

ANSWER: A
65.

If X is a normally distributed random variable with a mean of 80 and a standard deviation of 12,
then the P(X = 68) is
A.
B.
C.
D.
E.

.1587
.0000
.6587
.8413
None of the above answers are correct

ANSWER: B
66.

Which of the following statements about the percentiles for the standard normal distribution are
correct?
A.
B.
C.
D.
E.

The 90th percentile is approximately 1.28


The 10th percentile is approximately 1.28
The 75th percentile is approximately .67
The15th percentile is approximately 1.04
None of the above answers is correct

ANSWER: C

Section 4.4
67.

Which of the following properties of the gamma function are true?

1 x
A. For any > 0, ( ) 0 x e dx

B. For any > 1, ( ) ( 1) ( 1)


C. For any positive integer n, (n) (n 1)!
D. (.50)
E. All of the above statements are
ANSWER: E

68.

Which of the following statements are true?

65

CHAPTER FOUR
A. The gamma family is a family of probability density functions that yields a wide variety of
skewed distributional shapes.
B. The expected value of a random variable X having the gamma distribution f ( x; , ) with
parameter values 2 and 2 is E(X) = 2
C. The standard deviation of a random variable X having the gamma distribution with parameter
values 1 and 2 is 4
D. A continuous random variable X having a gamma distribution with parameters and
satisfy 0 and 0 is said to have a standard gamma distribution if 1 and 0 .
E. All of the above statements are true.
ANSWER: A
69.

Which of the following statements are not true?


A. The incomplete gamma function can be used to compute probabilities involving nonstandard
gamma distributions.
B. The family of exponential distributions provides probability models that are very widely used
in engineering and science disciplines.
C. A continuous random variable X is said to have an exponential distribution with parameter
, 0, if the probability density function of X is f ( x; ) e x for all x 0 .
D. The exponential distribution with parameter is a special case of the gamma distribution
with parameters and for which 1 and 1/ .
E. All of the above statements are not true.
ANSWER: C

70.

Which of the following statements are not true if the probability density function of a continuous
5 x
random variable X is f ( x) 5e ; x 0 ?
A. E(X) = .20
B. V(X) = .02
5 x
C. The cumulative distribution function of X is F ( x) 1 e ; x 0
D. P ( X 1) .9933
E. All of the above statements are not true.
ANSWER: B

71.

Which of the following statements are not true?


A. The exponential distribution is frequently used as a model for the distribution of times
between the occurrence of successive events such as calls coming in a switchboard.
B. The exponential distribution is closely related to the Poisson process.
C. The chi-squared distribution with parameter is a special case of the gamma distribution
with parameters and for which / 2 and =2 .
D. All of the above statements are true.
E. All of the above statements are not true.
ANSWER: D

Section 4.5

66

Continuous Random Variables and Probability Distributions


72.

Which of the following statements are true?


A.
B.
C.
D.
E.

The Weibull distribution is a special case of the exponential distribution.


The exponential distribution is a special case of both the gamma and Weibull distributions.
There are gamma distributions that are not Weibull distributions.
There are Weibull distributions that are not gamma distributions.
All of the above statements are true.

ANSWER: E
73.

If X is a nonnegative random variable and the random variable Y = ln(X) is normally distributed
with parameters and , then which of the following statements are not true?
A.
B.
C.
D.

X is a lognormal random variable.


The parameters and are the mean and standard deviation of X.
The parameters and are the mean and standard deviation of Y.
The cumulative distribution function (cdf) of X can be expressed in terms of the cdf ( z ) of a
standard normal random variable Z.
E. All of the above statements are not true.
ANSWER: B
74.

Which of the following statements are true?


A. A random variable X is said to have a standard beta distribution with parameters and
(both positive) if the probability density function of X is:
f ( x; , )

( ) 1
x (1 x) 1 , 0 x 1
( )( )

B. If the random variable X is distributed as a standard beta distribution with parameters


and , then the mean of X is .
C. The lognormal curve, like the normal curve, is symmetric around the mean.
D. All of the above statements are true.
E. None of the above statements is true.
ANSWER: A
75.

If the random variable Y = ln(X) is normally distributed with parameters .50 and =.25 , then
the variance of X is approximately
A.
B.
C.
D.

2.8936
0.0645
0.1866
.04320

ANSWER: C

67

CHAPTER FOUR

Section 4.6
76.

Which of the following statements are not correct?


A. The essence of a probability plot is that if the distribution on which the plot is based is correct,
the points in the plot will fall close to a straight line.
B. If the actual distribution is quite different from the one used to construct the probability plot,
the points should depart substantially from a linear pattern.
C. Sample percentiles are defined in a different way that percentiles of a population distribution
are defined.
D. All of the above statements are correct.
E. None of the above statements are correct.
ANSWER: C

77.

Which of the following statements are correct?


A.
B.
C.
D.
E.

If we order the n-sample observations from smallest to largest, then the i th smallest
observation in the list is taken to be the [100 (i - .5)/n] th sample percentile.
Using linear interpolation, the 25th percentile of the standard normal distribution is
approximately .675
Percentile for a normal ( , ) distribution corresponding z percentile.
All of the above statements are correct
None of the above statements is correct

ANSWER: A
78.

Which of the following statements are not correct?


A. If the sample observations are in fact drawn from a normal distribution with mean value
and standard deviation , the points on the probability plot should fall close to a straight line
with slope and intercept .
B. Minitab statistical software provides an alternative version of a normal probability plot in
which the z percentile axis is replaced by a nonlinear probability axis.
C. Lognormal and Weibull distributions are symmetric distributions.
D. All of the above statements are correct
E. None of the above statements is correct
ANSWER: C

79.

Which of the following statements are correct about a nonnormal population distribution?
A. It can be symmetric and has lighter tails than does a normal distribution; that is, the density
curve declines more rapidly out in the tails than does a normal curve.
B. It can be symmetric and has heavy tails compared to a normal population.
C. It can be skewed.
D. All of the above statements are correct
E. None of the above statements is correct.
ANSWER: D

68

Continuous Random Variables and Probability Distributions

Applied and Computational Questions


Section 4.1
80.

Let X denote the amount of time for which a book on 2-hour reserve at a college-library is checked
out by a randomly selected student and suppose that X
.5 x 0 x 2
0 otherwise

f ( x)

Calculate the following probabilities:


a.
b.
c.

P ( X 1)
P (.5 X 1.5)
P ( X 1.5)

ANSWER:

81.

a.

P ( X 1)

b.

P (.5 X 1.5) .5xdx .25 x 2 ]1.5


.5 .5

c.

2
P ( X 1.5) f ( x)dx .5xdx .25 x 2 ]1.5
.438

f ( x)dx .5 xdx .25 x 2 ]10 .25


0

1.5

.5

1.5

1.5

A college professor always finishes his lectures within 2 minutes after the bell rings to end the
period and the end of the lecture. Let X = the time that elapses between the bell and the end of the
lecture and suppose the pdf of X is
2
kx
0

f ( x)
a.
b.
c.
d.

0 x2
otherwise

Find the value of k. [Hint: Total area under the graph of f(x) is 1.]
What is the probability that the lecture ends within 1minutes of the bell ringing?
What is the probability that the lecture continues beyond the bell for between 60 and 90
seconds?
What is the probability that the lecture continues for at least 90 seconds beyond the bell?

ANSWER:

2
3
2
a. 1 f ( x) dx 0 kx dx k ( x / 3)]0 k (8 / 3) k 3 / 8 .375
1

2
3 1
b. P (0 X 1) 0 .375 x dx .125 x ]0 .125
1.5

2
3 1.5
c. P (1 X 1.5) 1 .375 x dx .125 x ]1 .2969
1.5

2
3 1.5
d. P ( X 1.5) 1 0 .375 x dx 1 .125 x ]0 .5781

69

CHAPTER FOUR
82.

The time X (minutes) for a lab assistant to prepare the equipment for a certain experiment is
believed to have a uniform distribution with A = 20 and B = 30.
a.
b.
c.
d.

Write the pdf of X and sketch its graph.


What is the probability that preparation time exceeds 27 minutes?
Find the preparation mean time, then calculate the probability that preparation is within 2
minutes of the mean time?
For any a such that 20 < a < a + 2 < 30, what is the probability that preparation time is
between a and a + 2 minutes?

ANSWER:
1
for 20 x 30 and 0 otherwise
a. f ( x)
10
30 1
b. P ( X 27) 27 dx .3
10
30
1
x2
c. E ( X ) x dx
20
10
20

30

25
20

25 2 is from 23 to 27 minutes:
27
27 1
x
P (23 X 27)
dx .40
23 10
10 23
a2

d. P (a x a 2) a
83.

1
dx .2, since the interval has length 2.
10

Time headway in traffic flow is the elapsed time between the time that one car finishes passing a
fixed point and the instant that the next car begins to pass that point. Let X = the time headway for
two randomly chosen consecutive cars on a freeway during a period of heavy flow. The following
pdf of X is
.15e .15 x .5
0

f x

x .5
otherwise

What is the probability that the time headway is


a.
b.
c.
d.

At most 6 seconds?
At least 6 seconds?
At most 5 seconds?
Between 5 and 6 seconds?

ANSWER:
6

5.5

a. P ( X 6) .5 .15e .15( x 5) dx .150 e .15u du (after u x .5)


e.15u ]05.5 1 e.825 .562

b.

P X 6 1 P X 6 1 .562 .438

c.

P X 5 .15e.15 x .5 dx .15 e .15u du

4.5

.5

e .15u
d.

70

4.5
0

after u x .5

1 e.675 .491

P (5 Y 6) P (Y 6) P (Y 5) .562 .491 .071

Continuous Random Variables and Probability Distributions

Section 4.2
84.

The cdf of checkout duration X for a book on a 2-hour reserve at a college library is given by:
x0

x
0 x2
4
1 2 x

F ( x)

Use this cdf to compute the following:


a.
b.
c.
d.
e.

P ( X 1)
P (.5 X 1)
P ( X .5)
)]
The median checkout duration % [ H int : solve .5 F ( %

F ( x) to obtain the density function f ( x)

ANSWER:
a. P ( X 1) F (1)

1
.25
4

3
.1875
16
15
.9375
c. P ( X .5) 1 P( X .5) 1 F (.5)
16
%2
d. .5 F ( %
)
%2 2 % 2 1.414
4
x
for 0 x 2, and = 0 otherwise
e. f ( x) F ( x)
2
b. P (.5 X 1) F (1) F (.5)

85.

Let X denote the amount of space occupied by an article placed in a 1 ft 3 packing container. The
pdf of X is
90 x8 (1 x) 0 x 1
otherwise
0

f ( x)
a.
b.
c.
d.
e.
f.

Obtain the cdf of X..


What is P( X .5)[i.e., F (.5)]?
What is P(.25 X .5) ?
What is the 75th percentile of the distribution?
Compute E ( X ) and x .
What is the probability that X is within 1 standard deviation of its mean value?

71

CHAPTER FOUR
ANSWER:
x

8
8
9
a. F ( x) f ( y )dy 0 90 y (1 y )dy 90 0 ( y y )dy

1 9 1 10 x
y y ]0 10 x 9 9 x10
10
9

90

Therefore,
0

F x 10 x9 9 x10
1

for x o
for 0 x 1
for x 1

9
10
b. F (.5) 10(.5) 9(.5) .0107
9
10
c. P (.25 X .5) F (.5) F (.25) .0107 [10(.25) 9(.25) ]
.0107 .0000 .0107
th
d. The 75 percentile is the value of x for which F(x) = .75

e.

9 x10

90 11 1 9
x ]0
.8182
11
11

E ( X ) x f ( x)dx x 90 x8 (1 x)dx 90 x 9 (1 x)dx

E ( X 2 ) x 2 f ( x)dx x 2 90 x8 (1 x)dx 90 x10 (1 x)dx


90 11 90 12 1
x
x ]0 .6818
11
12
V ( X ) .6818 (.8182) 2 .0124,
x .11134.
f. (.7068,.9295). Thus, P( X ) F (.9295) F (.7068)
=.8465 - .1602 = .6863

86.

Let X have a uniform distribution on the interval [a, b].


a.
b.
c.

Obtain an expression for the (100p) th percentile.


Compute E(X), V(X), and x .
n
For n a positive integer, compute E ( X ) .

ANSWER:
xa
p x (100 p)th percentile a (b a ) p
ba
b
1
1 x2 b 1 1
ab
dx
]a
b2 a2

b. E ( X ) x
a
ba
ba 2
2 ba
2
2
2
1
1
a

ab

b
E( X 2 )
b3 a 3
3 ba
3
2
2
2
a ab b
(b a )2
(b a )
(a b)
V (X )

, so x

3
2
12
12

a.

F ( x)

b
1
b n 1 a n 1
n
n
dx
c. E ( X ) a x
ba
(n 1)(b a )

72

Continuous Random Variables and Probability Distributions


87.

Let X be the temperature in oC at which a certain chemical reaction takes place, and let Y be the
temperature in oF (so Y = 1.8X + 32).
a.
b.
c.

If the median of the X distribution is 2 , show that 1.8 % + 32 is the median of the Y
distribution.
How is the 90th percentile of the Y distribution related to the 90th percentile of the X
distribution? Verify your conjecture.
More generally, if Y = aX + b, how is any particular percentile of the Y distribution related to
the corresponding percentile of the X distribution?

ANSWER:
) .5
a. P (Y 1.8% 32) P (1.8 X 32 1.8% 32) P ( X %
th
b. 90 percentile for Y 1.8 (.9) 32 where (.9) is the 90th percentile for X , since
P (Y 1.8 (.9) 32) P (1.8 X 32 1.8 (.9) 32) ( X (.9) .9 as desired.
c. The (100p)th percentile for Y is 1.8 ( p) 32 , verified by substituting p for .9 in the argument
of b. When Y = aX + b, (i.e. a linear transformation of X), and the (100p)th percentile of the X
distribution is ( p) , then the corresponding (100p)th percentile of the Y distribution is
a ( p ) b. (same linear transformation applied to Xs percentile)

Section 4.3
88.

Let Z be a standard normal random variable and calculate the following probabilities:
a.
b.
c.
d.
e.

P (0 Z 2.25)
P (0 Z 1)
P(2.0 Z 0)
P (1.50 Z 1.50)
P ( Z 1.32)

f. P Z 1.70
g. P (1.50 Z 2.00)
h. P (1.50 Z 2.50)
i. P Z 1.50

j. P ( Z 2.40)
ANSWER:
a. P (0 Z 2.25) (2.25) (0) .4878
b. P (0 Z 1) = (1) (0) .3413
c. P(2.0 Z 0) = (0) (2.0) .4772
d. P (1.50 Z 1.50) = (1.50) (1.50) .8664
e. P ( Z 1.32) = (1.32) .9066
f. P Z 1.70 = 1 1.70 .9554
g. P (1.50 Z 2.00) = (2) (1.50) .9104
h. P (1.50 Z 2.50) = (2.50) (1.50) .0606
i. P Z 1.50 = 1 (1.50) .0668

j. P ( Z 2.40) P (2.40 Z 2.40) (2.40) (2.40) .9836

73

CHAPTER FOUR
89.

In each case, determine the value of the constant c that makes the probability statement correct.
a.
b.
c.
d.
e.

(c) .9838
P (0 Z c) .195
P ( Z c) .117
P (c Z c) .668
P | Z | c .0202

ANSWER:
a. c .9838 c 2.14
b. P (0 Z c) .195 (c) .6950 c .51
c.

P Z c .117 c .8830 c 1.19

d.

P (c Z c) (c) (c) (c) (1 (c)) 2 (c) 1 .668


(c) .8340 c .97

e.

P | Z | c .0204 P | Z | c .9796 P c Z c .9796

c c .9796 2 c 1 .9796 c .9898 c 2.32

90.

If X is a normal random variable with mean 85 and standard deviation 10, compute the following
probabilities by standardizing.
a.
b.
c.
d.
e.

P( X 100)
P ( X 80)
P (65 X 100)
P ( X 70)
P (85 X 95)

f. P( X 80 10)
ANSWER:
a. P ( X 100) P ( Z 1.5) (1.50) .9332
b. P ( X 80) P ( Z .5) (.5) .3085
c. P (65 X 100) P(2 Z 1.5) (1.5) (2.0) .9332 .0228 .9104
d. P ( X 70) P ( Z 1.50) 1 (1.50) .9332
e. P (85 X 95) P (0 Z 1.0) (1.0) (0) .3413
f.

P ( X 80 10) P(10 X 80 10) P (70 X 90)


= P (1.5 Z .5) (.5) (1.5) = .6915 - .0668 = .6247

91.

The distribution of resistance for resistors of a certain type is known to be normal, with 10% of all
resistors having a resistance exceeding 10.634 ohms, and 5% having a resistance smaller than
9.7565 ohms. What are the mean value and standard deviation of the resistance distribution?
ANSWER:

74

Continuous Random Variables and Probability Distributions

92.

th
Since 1.28 is the 90th z percentile ( z.1 1.28) and 1.645 is the 5 z percentile ( z.05 1.645) ,
the given information implies that (1.28) 10.634 and (1.645) 9.7565 , from which
(2.925) ..8775, .30, and 10.25
Let X have a binomial distribution with parameters n = 25 and p. Calculate each of the following
probabilities using the normal approximation (with the continuity correction) for the cases p = .5
and .6, and compare to the exact probabilities calculated from the cumulative binomial
probabilities table available in your text.

a. P (10 X 15)
b. P ( X 10)
c. P ( X 15)
ANSWER:
P:
.5
:
12.5
:
2.50

.6
15
2.45

a.
P

Binomial
P (10 X 15)

.5
.6

12.5
15

2.5
2.45

.770
.562

.5
.60

12.5
15

P
.5
.6

Normal Approximation
P(9.5 X 15.5)
P(1.20 Z 1.20) = .7689
P(2.25 Z .20) = .5671

b.
Normal Approximation
P ( X 10.5)

2.5
2.45

Binomial
P ( X 10)
.212
.034

Binomial
P ( X 15)

Normal Approximation
P( X 14.5)

12.5
15

2.5
2.45

.212
.586

P ( Z .80) = .2119
P ( Z 1.84) = .0329

c.

93.

P( Z .80) = ..2119
P( Z .20) = .5793

Suppose only 40% of all drivers in Florida regularly wear a seatbelt. A random sample of 500
drivers is selected. What is the probability that
a.
b.

Between 170 and 220 (inclusive) of the drivers in the sample regularly wear a seatbelt?
Fewer than 175 of those in the sample regularly wear a seatbelt?

ANSWER:
n 500, p .4, 200, 10.9545
a. P (170 X 220) P (19.5 normal 220.5) P (2.87 Z 1.78) .9666
b. P ( X 175) P ( X 174) P (normal 174.5) P( Z 2.33) .0099

75

CHAPTER FOUR

Section 4.4
94.

Let X have a standard gamma distribution with 6. Evaluate the following:


a.
b.
c.
d.
e.
f.

P ( X 5)
P ( X 5)
P ( X 8)
P (3 X 8)
P (3 X 8)
P( X 4 or X 6)

ANSWER:
a. P ( X 5) F (5; 6) .384
b. P ( X 5) P ( X 5) .384
c. P ( X 8) 1 P( X 8) 1 F (8; 6) .191
d. P (3 X 8) F (8; 6) F (3; 6) .725
e. P (3 X 8) .725
f. P( X 4 or X 6) 1 P(4 X 6) 1 [ F (6; 6) F (4;6)] .661
95.

Suppose that when a transistor of a certain type is subjected to an accelerated life test, the lifetime
X (in weeks) has a gamma distribution with mean of 40 and variance of 320.
a.
b.

What is the probability that a transistor will last between 1 and 40 weeks?
What is the probability that a transistor will last at most 40 weeks? Is the median of the
lifetime distribution less than 40? Why or why not?

ANSWER:
40, 2 320 40, 2 320 8, 5
a. P (16 X 40) F (5;5) F (2;5) .507
b. P ( X 40) F (5;5) .560, so while the mean is 40, the median is less than 40.
( P( X %
) .5); This is the result of the positive skew of the gamma distribution.
96.

Let X = the time between two successive arrivals at the drive-up window of a local bank. If X has
an exponential distribution with = 1 (which is identical to a standard gamma distribution with
=1), compute the following:
a.
b.
c.
d.

The expected time between two successive arrivals.


The standard deviation of the time between two successive arrivals.
P ( X 5) .
P (3 X 5) .

ANSWER:
a. E ( X ) 1/ =1
b. 1/ =1
(1)(5)
1 e 5 = .9933
c. P ( X 5) 1 e

76

Continuous Random Variables and Probability Distributions


(1)(5)
1 e (1)(3) e 3 e 5 = .043
d. P (3 X 5) 1 e

97.

Extensive experience with fans of a certain type used in diesel engines has suggested that the
exponential distribution provides a good model for time until failure. Suppose the mean time until
failure is 25,000 hours. What is the probability that
a.
b.

A randomly selected fan will last at least 20,000 hours? At most 30,000 hours? Between
20,000 and 30,000 hours?
The lifetime of a fan exceeds the mean value by more than 2 standard deviations? More than 3
standard deviations?

ANSWER:
1
Mean = 25, 000 implies .00004

a. P ( X 20, 000) 1 P( X 20, 000) 1 F (20, 000;.00004) e (.00004)(20,000) .449


P ( X 30, 000) F (30, 000;.00004) e 1.2 .699
P (20, 000 X 30, 000) .699 .551 .148
b.

1
25,000, so P( X 2 ) P( x 75, 000) 1 F (75, 000;.00004) .05.

Similarly, P( X 3 ) P( x 100, 000) .018

Section 4.5
98.

The lifetime X (in hundreds of hours) of a certain type of vacuum tube has a Weibull distribution
with parameters 2 and 3. Compute the following:
a.
b.
c.

E(X) and V(X)


P ( X 3)
P (1.5 X 6)

ANSWER:
1
1 1

a. E ( X ) 3 1 3
2
2 2

2.66 , and

Var( X ) 9[(1 1) 2 1 ] 1.926


2

b. P ( X 3) 1 e (3 / ) 1 e (3 / 3) 1 e 1 .632
(6 / 3)
1 e (1.5 / 3)
c. P (1.5 X 6) 1 e

99.

e.25 e 4 .760

Let X = hourly median power (in decibels) of received radio signals transmitted between two
cities. It is believed that the lognormal distribution provides a reasonable probability model for X.
If the parameter values are 3.5 and 1.2, calculate the following:
a.
b.
c.

The mean value and standard deviation of received power


The probability that received power is between 50 and 250 dB
The probability that X is less than its mean value. Why is this probability not .5?

77

CHAPTER FOUR

ANSWER:
3.5 (1.2)
a. E ( X ) e

68.0335;V ( X ) e 2(3.5) (1.2) e(1.2) 1 14907.168; and

/2

x 122.0949
ln(250) 3.5
ln(50) 3.5

P z
b. P (50 X 250) P z

1.2
1.2

P ( Z 1.68) P ( Z .34) .9535 .6331 .3204.


ln(68.0335) 3.5

c. P ( X 68.0335) P z
P ( Z .60) .7257.
1.2

The lognormal distribution is not a symmetric distribution.


100.

Suppose the proportion X of surface area in a randomly selected quadrat that is covered by a
certain plant has a standard beta distribution with 5 and 2.
a.
b.
c.
d.

Compute E(X) and V(X).


Compute P ( X .2).
Compute P (.2 X .4).
What is the expected proportion of the sampling region not covered by the plant?

ANSWER:
a. E ( X )

5
5
10
.714, V ( X )
.0255
(5 2) 7
(49)(8)

b. f ( x)

(7)
x 4 (1 x) 30( x 4 x 5 ) for 0 X 1,
(5)(2)
2

4
5
so P( X .2) 0 30( x x )dx .0016
.4

4
5
c. P (.2 X .4) .2 30( x x )dx .03936

d. E (1 X ) 1 E ( X ) 1
101.

5 2
.286
7 7

Stress is applied to a 20-in. steel bar that is clamped in a fixed position at each end. Let X =
distance from the left end at which the bar snaps. Suppose Y/20 has a standard beta distribution
100
.
with E(Y) = 10 and V(Y) =
7
a. What are the parameters of the relevant standard beta distribution?
b. Compute P (8 Y 12).
c. Compute the probability that the bar snaps more than 2 in. from where you expect it to.
ANSWER:
1

100
100
1
Y
Y
2 ; Var(Y)= 7 Var 20 2800 28
20

a. E (Y ) 10 E

3, 3, after some algebra.


( ) ( 1)
2

8
12

;3,3 F
;3,3
F (6;3,3) F (.4;3,3).
20

20

b. P (8 X 12) F

78

Continuous Random Variables and Probability Distributions


c. We expect it to snap at 10, so P(Y 8 or Y 12) 1 P(8 X 12) 1 .365 .665.

Section 4.6
102.

Consider the following ten observations on bearing lifetime (in hours):


152.7
204.7

172.0
216.5

172.5
234.9

173.3
262.6

193.0
422.6

Construct a normal probability plot and comment on the plausibility of the normal distribution as a
model for bearing lifetime.
ANSWER:
The z percentiles and observations are shown on the normal probability plot below. The
accompanying plot is quite straight except for the point corresponding to the largest observation.
This observation is clearly much larger than what would be expected in a normal random sample.
Because of this outlier, it would be inadvisable to analyze the data using any inferential method
that depended on assuming a normal population distribution.

103.

Construct a normal probability plot for the following sample of observations on coating thickness
for low-viscosity paint. Would you feel comfortable estimating population mean thickness using a
method that assumed a normal population distribution?
.83
1.48

.98
1.49

1.06
1.51

1.14
1.62

1.20
1.65

1.25
1.71

1.29
1.76

1.40
1.83

ANSWER:
The z percentile values and observations are shown on the normal probability plot below. The
accompanying probability plot is reasonably straight, and thus it would be reasonable to use
estimating methods that assume a normal population distribution.

79

CHAPTER FOUR

104.

The propagation of fatigue cracks in various aircraft parts has been the subject of extensive study
in recent years. The accompanying data consists of propagation lives to reach crack size in
fastener holes intended for use in military aircraft.
.736
1.011

.863
1.064

.865
1.109

.913
1.132

.915
1.140

.937
1.153

.983
1.253

1.007
1.394

Construct a normal probability plot for the data. Does it appear plausible that propagation life has
a normal distribution? Explain.
ANSWER:
The z percentile and observations are shown on the normal probability plot below. The
accompanying probability plot is very straight, suggesting that an assumption of population
normality is extremely plausible.

80

Continuous Random Variables and Probability Distributions

81