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Related rates change in distance between two boats?

  1. Apr 8, 2010 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data
    Two boats leave a dock at the same tie. One goes south at 30 km/h and the other goes southwest at 40 km/h. What is the rate of change of the distance between the 2 boats, 30 minutes after they leave?

    I know how to do these questions when it's a right triangle...but since this has one boat going south, and one going southwest...I don't know how to do it.
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 8, 2010 #2


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    I think you can make 2 right triangles by drawing a line from the position of first boat perpendicular to the path of the 2nd boat. Also, don't you know the angle between the paths of the two boats?
    Last edited: Apr 8, 2010
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