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What is Trigonometry?

O Trigonometry is a methodology for finding some unknown

elements of a triangle provided the data includes a sufficient

amount of linear and angular measurements to define a

shape uniquely.

O

For example, two sides a and b of a triangle and the angle

they include define the triangle uniquely. The third side c

can then be found from the Law of Cosines while the angles

α and β are determined from the Law of Sines.

O Trigonometry

is

derived

from

Greek

words

trigōnon,

meaning "triangle" and metron, meaning "measure“.

Applications of Trigonometry

Line of Sight

Suppose a boy is looking at a bird on a tree, so the

line joining the eye of the boy and the bird is called

the Line of Sight.

Angle of Elevation

Angle of Elevation

Lets take the same case again that a boy is looking at

a bird on a tree. The angle which the line of sight

makes with a horizontal line drawn away from the

eyes is called the angle of elevation.

Angle of Depression

Angle of Depression

Now if we consider that the bird is looking at the boy,

then the angle between the bird’s line of sight and

horizontal line drawn from its eyes is called the Angle

of Depression.

Lets now solve some

examples…

O Following are some very simple examples of the

application of trigonometry.

O In the first example, you have to find the distance of

a man from the building as well as the distance

between him and the top of the tower.

O In the second example, you have to find

Examples…

O

A man is standing at a distance from a building of height 30 m. The

angle of elevation from the man’s eyes to the top of the tower is 45

degrees. Find the distance of the man from the building as well as the

distance between him and the top of the tower.

A

30

m

45˚

C

B

(man)

O Distance (BC)

tan45˚ = 1 = AB/BC = 30/BC

BC = 30 m

Therefore, the distance between the man and the tower is 30

meters.

O Now, Finding AC

sin45˚ = 1/√2 = 30/AC

AC = 30 √2 meters

Thus, the distance between the man and the top of the tower is 30

√2 meters.

O

A man in a car is looking at the top of a tree, which is 40 m

from him. Find the distance between the man and the top of

the tree, if the angle of elevation is 30 degrees.

A

30˚

C

(car)

B

40 m

cos30˚ = √3 / 2 = 40 / AC

AC = 80 / √3

Therefore, distance between the man and the top of the tree is 80 / √3

meters.

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