1. Limited time only! Sign up for a free 30min personal tutor trial with Chegg Tutors
    Dismiss Notice
Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Homework Help: Irregular Cone Geometry

  1. Mar 6, 2010 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data

    I'm wondering whether or not it is possible to get the area of the base of an elliptical, non-right cone if the following two parameters are known:

    - length from center of ellipse up to vertex
    - angle that the sides make

    Here is a simple visual: http://i.imgur.com/M6jT5.png

    2. Relevant equations

    [tex]A=\pi ab[/tex]

    3. The attempt at a solution

    I've tried looking at geometry guides with no success. I'm thinking I might be able to use some clever trig and drop a right angle down from the vertex in order to get the length of the semi-minor/major axis, but I can't reason it out. any advice would be appreciated.
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 6, 2010 #2

    tiny-tim

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper

    Hi Appity! :smile:

    Hint: slice the cone so that you get a circular cross-section, then use trig to find the area of the projection. :wink:
     
Share this great discussion with others via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook