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Right Triangle Trigonometry

Trigonometry is based upon ratios of the sides of right triangles.

hyp opp x adj
hyp
opp
x
adj

The sides of the right triangle are:

the side opposite the acute angle x, the side adjacent to the acute angle x, and the hypotenuse of the right triangle.

Right Triangle Trigonometry

The hypotenuse is the longest side and is always opposite the right angle.

The opposite and adjacent sides refer to another angle, other than the 90 o .

x x
x
x

Trigonometric Ratios

hyp X
hyp
X

The trigonometric functions are:

sine, cosine, and tangent.

adj

opp

sin x

=

opp

hyp

cos x

=

adj

hyp

tan x

=

opp

adj

S O H

C A H

T O A

Finding a side from a triangle

1.

7 cm 30 o k
7 cm
30
o
k

We have been given the adj and hyp so we use COSINE:

adjacent

Cos x = hypotenuse

Cos x =

a

h

Cos 30

=

k

7

(Cos 30)(7) = k 6.1 cm = k

2.

4 cm

50 o r
50
o
r

We have been given the opp and adj so we use TAN:

Tan x =

We have been given the opp and adj so we use TAN: Tan x =

Tan x =

Tan 50

=

o

a

r

4

(Tan 50) (4) = r

4.8 cm

= r

3.

k

12 cm 25 o
12 cm
25
o

We have been given the opp and hyp so we use SINE:

Sin x =

We have been given the opp and hyp so we use SINE: Sin x =

Sin x =

sin 25

=

o

h

k

12

(Sin 25) (12) = k

5.1 cm = k

It can also be used in reverse, finding an angle from a ratio. To do this we use the sin -1 , cos -1 and tan -1 function keys.

Example:

  • 1. sin x =

0.1115 find angle x.

sin -1
sin -1
It can also be used in reverse, finding an angle from a ratio. To do this
  • 0.1115 =

(

2nd
2nd
sin
sin

)

  • x = sin -1 (0.1115)

  • x = 6.4 o

  • 2. cos x = 0.8988 find angle x

cos -1
cos -1
It can also be used in reverse, finding an angle from a ratio. To do this
  • 0.8988 =

(

2nd
2nd
cos
cos

)

  • x = cos -1 (0.8988)

  • x = 26 o

4.

h 14 cm x
h
14 cm
x

6 cm

a

We have been given the adjacent and hypotenuse so we use COSINE:

Cos x =

adjacent

hypotenuse

Cos x =

Cos x =

a

h

6

14

Cos x = 0.4286

  • x = cos -1 (0.4286)

  • x = 64.6 o

  • 5. Find angle x

Given adj and opp need to use tan:

Tan x =

opposite

adjacent

x
x

o

8 cm

  • 3 cm a

Tan x =

o

a

Tan x =

8

3

Tan x = 2.6667

  • x = tan -1 (2.6667)

  • x = 69.4 o

6.

10 cm

12 cm y sin y =
12 cm
y
sin y =

sin y =

Given opp and hyp need to use sin:

opposite

Sin y = hypotenuse

o

h

10

12

sin y = 0.8333

y = sin -1 (0.8333)

y = 56.4 o