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Q&A #193

Teachers' Lounge Discussion: Trigonometry Ratios

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From: Loyd <loydlin@aol.com>
To: Teacher2Teacher Public Discussion
Date: 2002053017:43:13
Subject: Re: Re: angle of elevation

On 2002053012:45:15, peter wrote:
>
>How do you solve the angle of elevation and angles of the sun. for
>example:the angle of elevation of the sun is 45 degrees. A tree has a
>shadow of 12m long. Find the height of the tree?
>


The sun's rays will strike the top of the tree and make an angle of
elevation of 45 degrees and assumming the tree is on level ground, the
angle of depression will also be 45 degrees.  Thus the 90 degree right
triangle will be a 45-45-90 degree right triangle.  The two legs will
be equal and the tree will be 12 feet tall.  If the angle of elevation
is say, 60 degrees you can use the tangent function to find the height
of the tree.  

                  /|
                 / |
                /  |
               /   |
              /    |H
             /     |
            /A=60  |
           /--------
               12 ft
              
Tan 60 = H/12
Multiply both sides by 12
12 x Tan 60 = H
Tan 60 = square root of 3
So, the answer is H=12 times square root of three = 20.78 to the
nearest 100th.



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