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The Converse of the Pythagorean Theorem

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The Converse of the Pythagorean Theorem

Geometry

- The Converse of the Pythagorean Theorem is True.
- Remember “Converse” means “Reverse.”

If the square of the length of the longest side of the triangle is equal to the sum of the squares of the lengths of the other two sides, then the triangle is a right triangle.

If c2 = a2 + b2, then ∆ABC is a right triangle.

- Use the Converse of the Pythagorean Theorem to show that a given triangle is a right triangle.

Check to see whether the side lengths satisfy the equation

√113

The triangle is a right triangle.

4√95

The triangle is NOT a right triangle.

- Sometimes it is hard to tell from looking at a triangle whether it is obtuse or acute. The theorems on the following slides can help you tell.

If the square of the length of the longest side of a triangle is less than the sum of the squares of the lengths of the other two sides, then the triangle is acute.

If c2 < a2 + b2, then ∆ABC is acute

c2 < a2 + b2

If the square of the length of the longest side of a triangle is greater than the sum of the squares of the lengths of the other two sides, then the triangle is obtuse.

If c2 > a2 + b2, then ∆ABC is obtuse

c2 > a2 + b2

- Decide whether the set of numbers can represent the side lengths of a triangle. If they can, classify the triangle as right, acute or obtuse.
- 38, 77, 86b. 10.5, 36.5, 37.5

c2= a2 + b2

862= 382 + 772

c2 is greater than a2 + b2

The triangle is obtuse

c2= a2 + b2

37.52= 10.52 + 36.52

c2 is less than a2 + b2

The triangle is acute

Construction: You use four stakes and string to mark the foundation of a house. You want to make sure the foundation is rectangular.

A friend measures the four sides to be 30 feet, 30 feet, 72 feet, and 72 feet. He says these measurements prove that the foundation is rectangular. Is he correct?

- Solution: Your friend is not correct. The foundation could be a nonrectangular parallelogram, as shown below.

b. You measure one of the diagonals to be 78 feet. Explain how you can use this measurement to tell whether the foundation will be rectangular.

Solution: The diagonal divides the foundation into two triangles. Compare the square of the length of the longest side with the sum of the squares of the shorter sides of one of these triangles.

Because 302 + 722 = 782, you can conclude that both the triangles are right triangles. The foundation is a parallelogram with two right angles, which implies that it is rectangular