Spherical Pythagorean theorem - finding length of longer side

  • #1

Main Question or Discussion Point

Picture of the problem:
Untitled-3.jpg


As seen by the diagram above, a2 < a1

But the spherical Pythagorean theorem states that cos c = (cos a)(cos b).

The triangle can either have a1,b,c or a2,b,c as its sides, which means the above equation contradicts itself. Am I missing something?

thanks.
 

Answers and Replies

  • #2
tiny-tim
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Hi Plutoniummatt! :smile:
But the spherical Pythagorean theorem states that cos c = (cos a)(cos b).
he he :biggrin:

a1 isn't part of a great circle :wink:
 
  • #3
hehe thanks, this is what happens when I look up a formula and not bother to read the text that goes with it :P but I assume you meant a2
 
  • #4
tiny-tim
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oops! :biggrin:
 

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