Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Cosine rule problems

  1. Nov 4, 2011 #1
    Hey,

    If I wanted to make up problems that are solved using the law of cosines, shouldn't it work out even if I arbitrarily choose side a, b, and θ? After all, any two sides and an angle between them form a triangle. Correct?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 4, 2011 #2
    Yes correct. I'm curious to know why you think choosing sides a b and theta wouldn't give you an answer for c.
     
  4. Nov 4, 2011 #3

    mathman

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    You're OK as long as the angle is < 180 deg.
     
  5. Nov 4, 2011 #4
    Even then you'd just have a triangle in the other direction. You would just have to change a sign(no pun intended).
     
Know someone interested in this topic? Share this thread via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook




Similar Discussions: Cosine rule problems
  1. Sine & Cosine Problems (Replies: 3)

  2. Cosine rule confusion (Replies: 7)

Loading...