Posted by **Georgia** on Tuesday, October 20, 2009 at 4:38pm.

At noon, ship A is 30 nautical miles due west of ship B. Ship A is sailing

west at 25 knots and ship B is sailing north at 16 knots.

How fast (in knots) is the distance between the ships changing at 7 PM? (Note: 1 knot is a

speed of 1 nautical mile per hour.)

- calculus -
**jim**, Tuesday, October 20, 2009 at 5:37pm
This and the other seem to be similar. Best to talk about the general method.

1. Find an expression for the distance between the two at time t.

In this case, with Pythagoras' help, that's

sqrt( (25t+30)^2 + (16t)^2)

= sqrt(881t^2 + 1500t + 900)

Nasty-looking thing. Call it

u = 881t^2 + 1500t + 900

and differentiate it.

du/dt = 1762t+1500

dy/du = 1/2sqrt(881t^2 + 1500t + 900)

so the whole thing is

(1762t+1500)/2sqrt(881t^2 + 1500t + 900)

Plug in t=7 and you're there.

=

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