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!

Maths problem involving Coordimate Geometry

  1. Mar 12, 2005 #1
    find the equation of a straight line whose x-intercept and y-intercept are a and b respectively.If this line varies such that [tex]\frac{1}{a^2}[/tex] + [tex]\frac{1}{b^2}[/tex] = [tex]\frac{1}{c^2} [/tex]with c as a constant,show that the locus of the foot of the perpendicular from the origin to this line is the curve
    [tex] X^2[/tex] +[tex] Y^2[/tex] = [tex]C^2 [/tex].

    I want to ask what is meant by the phrase 'foot of the perpendicular from the origin to this line ' ?

    I hope that somebody will help me to explain the meaning and thanks for anybody that spend some time on this question.
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2005
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 12, 2005 #2
    The 'foot of the perpendicular from the origin to this line' means the curve which the intesection of the line and the perpendicular forms as [tex]a[/tex] and [tex]b[/tex] are varied. This intersection point changes with [tex]a[/tex] and [tex]b[/tex], and the path that it traces they move through all their possible values is what the question is looking for.
Share this great discussion with others via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook