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relationships which, we find scientifically useful in physics.

The idea is that the adjacent side is next to the angle, the opposite is just that,

opposite to the angle. The hypotenuse is named after the mathematician who

first used such calculations!

There are three main ratios involved in triangles and thus three functions we

will use throughout this course;

They are in fact simple numerical ratios, which yield a generic function. The

ratio tells us about the angle of the triangle. One of these is;

opp

tan

adj

1

The inverse function depicted by a index in front of the ratio gives us the

angle in degrees or radians;

1

opp

tan

adj

NB. this is not the same as 1/x function, and make sure you calculator is in

the right mode deg or rad (not grad)

Mr Powell

AS Physics

We also can find the following two ratios in the same way;

1

adj adj

cos cos

hyp hyp

1

opp opp

sin sin

hyp hyp

NB. You can change the angle to be the other angle in the triangle.

However, this also changes the opp & adjacent.

These formulas can be rearranged in any way you like. However, the part

inside the brackets has to stay together if it is part of a function.

Mr Powell

AS Physics

Answer the following problems, write out the question, working and

answer on file paper. Use the following formulae;

a2 = b2 + c2 - 2bc cos A a

b

c

SinA SinB SinC

b2 = a2 + c2 - 2ac cos B tan = opp/adj

sin = opp/hyp

c2 = a2 + b2 - 2ab cos C

cos = adj/hyp

Mr Powell

1) Find the length of BC.

= 5, opp = 4, adj = 3?

8) Find x

9) Find y

10) Find Z

Answers

1) 4.86 cm

2) 31.8

3) 25.4

4) cos-1(3/5)

7) 4.40cm

8) x2 = 212 + 202

212 + 202 = 841

Find the square root of 841

x = 29

9) y2 = 3.22 + 5.52

3.22 + 5.52 = 40.49

Find the square root of 40.49

y = 6.4

192 - 162 =105

Find the square root of 105

z = 10.2

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