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How to Lay Out Tiles to Create Largest Circular Area

  1. Feb 4, 2010 #1
    A few months ago during college apps I came across the following question:

    a man has twenty-four 6" x 6" metal squares. he wants to lay them out on his desk so that he can cover as large a circular area as possible. how should he arrange the tiles? (note that the tiles will not form a circle themselves, but must completely cover the circular area.)

    im not very good at math, so i chose to answer another question instead of this one for the application, but i always wondered what the answer to this problem was. the only thing i can think of is that you should lay the tiles out in a square...what do you guys think?
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 4, 2010 #2
    Did you get to use a computer and how much time did you have for it?

    According to this link http://www2.stetson.edu/~efriedma/sqcovcir/" [Broken]

    making a square is not the best solution if you have 16 squares, and you can't make
    a square with 24 tiles anyway.
    Last edited by a moderator: May 4, 2017
  4. Feb 4, 2010 #3
    we had as much time as we needed. it was a part of a college application I did. So yes, we were allowed to use a computer.
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