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Let us look back at our values for tan θ

θ 0 30 45 60 90 180
tan θ 0 1 3 1 3 0

Now that we have graphs for sin θ and cos θ , there is an easy way to visualise the tangent graph. Let us look back at our definitions of sin θ and cos θ for a right-angled triangle.

sin θ cos θ = opposite hypotenuse adjacent hypotenuse = opposite adjacent = tan θ

This is the first of an important set of equations called trigonometric identities . An identity is an equation, which holds true for any value which is put into it. In this case we have shown that

tan θ = sin θ cos θ

for any value of θ .

So we know that for values of θ for which sin θ = 0 , we must also have tan θ = 0 . Also, if cos θ = 0 our value of tan θ is undefined as we cannot divide by 0. The graph is shown in [link] . The dashed vertical lines are at the values of θ where tan θ is not defined.

The graph of tan θ .

Functions of the form y = a tan ( x ) + q

In the figure below is an example of a function of the form y = a tan ( x ) + q .

The graph of 2 tan θ + 1 .

Functions of the form y = a tan ( θ ) + q :

  1. On the same set of axes, plot the following graphs:
    1. a ( θ ) = tan θ - 2
    2. b ( θ ) = tan θ - 1
    3. c ( θ ) = tan θ
    4. d ( θ ) = tan θ + 1
    5. e ( θ ) = tan θ + 2
    Use your results to deduce the effect of q .
  2. On the same set of axes, plot the following graphs:
    1. f ( θ ) = - 2 · tan θ
    2. g ( θ ) = - 1 · tan θ
    3. h ( θ ) = 0 · tan θ
    4. j ( θ ) = 1 · tan θ
    5. k ( θ ) = 2 · tan θ
    Use your results to deduce the effect of a .

You should have found that the value of a affects the steepness of each of the branches. The larger the absolute magnitude of a , the quicker the branches approach their asymptotes, the values where they are not defined. Negative a values switch the direction of the branches. You should have also found that the value of q affects the vertical shift as for sin θ and cos θ . These different properties are summarised in [link] .

Table summarising general shapes and positions of graphs of functions of the form y = a tan ( x ) + q .
a > 0 a < 0
q > 0
q < 0

Domain and range

The domain of f ( θ ) = a tan ( θ ) + q is all the values of θ such that cos θ is not equal to 0. We have already seen that when cos θ = 0 , tan θ = sin θ cos θ is undefined, as we have division by zero. We know that cos θ = 0 for all θ = 90 + 180 n , where n is an integer. So the domain of f ( θ ) = a tan ( θ ) + q is all values of θ , except the values θ = 90 + 180 n .

The range of f ( θ ) = a tan θ + q is { f ( θ ) : f ( θ ) ( - , ) } .


The y -intercept, y i n t , of f ( θ ) = a tan ( x ) + q is again simply the value of f ( θ ) at θ = 0 .

y i n t = f ( 0 ) = a tan ( 0 ) + q = a ( 0 ) + q = q


As θ approaches 90 , tan θ approaches infinity. But as θ is undefined at 90 , θ can only approach 90 , but never equal it. Thus the tan θ curve gets closer and closer to the line θ = 90 , without ever touching it. Thus the line θ = 90 is an asymptote of tan θ . tan θ also has asymptotes at θ = 90 + 180 n , where n is an integer.

Graphs of trigonometric functions

  1. Using your knowldge of the effects of a and q , sketch each of the following graphs, without using a table of values, for θ [ 0 ; 360 ]
    1. y = 2 sin θ
    2. y = - 4 cos θ
    3. y = - 2 cos θ + 1
    4. y = sin θ - 3
    5. y = tan θ - 2
    6. y = 2 cos θ - 1
  2. Give the equations of each of the following graphs:

The following presentation summarises what you have learnt in this chapter. Ignore the last slide.

End of chapter exercises

  1. Calculate the unknown lengths
  2. In the triangle P Q R , P R = 20  cm, Q R = 22  cm and P R ^ Q = 30 . The perpendicular line from P to Q R intersects Q R at X . Calculate
    1. the length X R ,
    2. the length P X , and
    3. the angle Q P ^ X
  3. A ladder of length 15 m is resting against a wall, the base of the ladder is 5 m from the wall. Find the angle between the wall and the ladder?
  4. A ladder of length 25 m is resting against a wall, the ladder makes an angle 37 to the wall. Find the distance between the wall and the base of the ladder?
  5. In the following triangle find the angle A B ^ C
  6. In the following triangle find the length of side C D
  7. A ( 5 ; 0 ) and B ( 11 ; 4 ) . Find the angle between the line through A and B and the x-axis.
  8. C ( 0 ; - 13 ) and D ( - 12 ; 14 ) . Find the angle between the line through C and D and the y-axis.
  9. A 5 m ladder is placed 2 m from the wall. What is the angle the ladder makes with the wall?
  10. Given the points: E(5;0), F(6;2) and G(8;-2), find angle F E ^ G .
  11. An isosceles triangle has sides 9 cm , 9 cm and 2 cm . Find the size of the smallest angle of the triangle.
  12. A right-angled triangle has hypotenuse 13 mm . Find the length of the other two sides if one of the angles of the triangle is 50 .
  13. One of the angles of a rhombus ( rhombus - A four-sided polygon, each of whose sides is of equal length) with perimeter 20 cm is 30 .
    1. Find the sides of the rhombus.
    2. Find the length of both diagonals.
  14. Captain Hook was sailing towards a lighthouse with a height of 10 m .
    1. If the top of the lighthouse is 30 m away, what is the angle of elevation of the boat to the nearest integer?
    2. If the boat moves another 7 m towards the lighthouse, what is the new angle of elevation of the boat to the nearest integer?
  15. (Tricky) A triangle with angles 40 , 40 and 100 has a perimeter of 20 cm . Find the length of each side of the triangle.

Questions & Answers

are nano particles real
Missy Reply
Hello, if I study Physics teacher in bachelor, can I study Nanotechnology in master?
Lale Reply
no can't
where we get a research paper on Nano chemistry....?
Maira Reply
nanopartical of organic/inorganic / physical chemistry , pdf / thesis / review
what are the products of Nano chemistry?
Maira Reply
There are lots of products of nano chemistry... Like nano coatings.....carbon fiber.. And lots of others..
Even nanotechnology is pretty much all about chemistry... Its the chemistry on quantum or atomic level
no nanotechnology is also a part of physics and maths it requires angle formulas and some pressure regarding concepts
Preparation and Applications of Nanomaterial for Drug Delivery
Hafiz Reply
Application of nanotechnology in medicine
has a lot of application modern world
what is variations in raman spectra for nanomaterials
Jyoti Reply
ya I also want to know the raman spectra
I only see partial conversation and what's the question here!
Crow Reply
what about nanotechnology for water purification
RAW Reply
please someone correct me if I'm wrong but I think one can use nanoparticles, specially silver nanoparticles for water treatment.
yes that's correct
I think
Nasa has use it in the 60's, copper as water purification in the moon travel.
nanocopper obvius
what is the stm
Brian Reply
is there industrial application of fullrenes. What is the method to prepare fullrene on large scale.?
industrial application...? mmm I think on the medical side as drug carrier, but you should go deeper on your research, I may be wrong
How we are making nano material?
what is a peer
What is meant by 'nano scale'?
What is STMs full form?
scanning tunneling microscope
how nano science is used for hydrophobicity
Do u think that Graphene and Fullrene fiber can be used to make Air Plane body structure the lightest and strongest. Rafiq
what is differents between GO and RGO?
what is simplest way to understand the applications of nano robots used to detect the cancer affected cell of human body.? How this robot is carried to required site of body cell.? what will be the carrier material and how can be detected that correct delivery of drug is done Rafiq
analytical skills graphene is prepared to kill any type viruses .
Any one who tell me about Preparation and application of Nanomaterial for drug Delivery
what is Nano technology ?
Bob Reply
write examples of Nano molecule?
The nanotechnology is as new science, to scale nanometric
nanotechnology is the study, desing, synthesis, manipulation and application of materials and functional systems through control of matter at nanoscale
Is there any normative that regulates the use of silver nanoparticles?
Damian Reply
what king of growth are you checking .?
how did you get the value of 2000N.What calculations are needed to arrive at it
Smarajit Reply
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Source:  OpenStax, Math 1508 (lecture) readings in precalculus. OpenStax CNX. Aug 24, 2011 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col11354/1.1
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