Mollweide's formula

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Figure 1 – A triangle. The angles α, β, and γ are respectively opposite the sides a, b, and c.

In trigonometry, Mollweide's formula, sometimes referred to in older texts as Mollweide's equations,[1] named after Karl Mollweide, is a set of two relationships between sides and angles in a triangle.[2] It can be used to check solutions of triangles.[3]

Let a, b, and c be the lengths of the three sides of a triangle. Let α, β, and γ be the measures of the angles opposite those three sides respectively. Mollweide's formula states that

 \frac{a + b}{c} = \frac{\cos\left(\frac{\alpha - \beta}{2}\right)}{\sin\left(\frac{\gamma}{2}\right)}

and

 \frac{a - b}{c} = \frac{\sin\left(\frac{\alpha - \beta}{2}\right)}{\cos\left(\frac{\gamma}{2}\right)}.

Each of these identities uses all six parts of the triangle—the three angles and the lengths of the three sides.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Ernest Julius Wilczynski, Plane Trigonometry and Applications, Allyn and Bacon, 1914, page 102
  2. ^ Michael Sullivan, Trigonometry, Dellen Publishing Company, 1988, page 243.
  3. ^ Ernest Julius Wilczynski, Plane Trigonometry and Applications, Allyn and Bacon, 1914, page 105

Additional reading[edit]

  • H. Arthur De Kleine, "Proof Without Words: Mollweide's Equation", Mathematics Magazine, volume 61, number 5, page 281, December, 1988.