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March 25, 2017

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A survey team is trying to estimate the height of a mountain above a level plain. From one point on the plain, they observe that the angle of elevation to the top of the mountain is 24. From a point 1000 feet closer to the mountain along the plain, they find that the angle of elevation is 27.
How high (in feet) is the mountain?

  • trig - ,

    Make a sideview sketch
    you should have 2 triangles, one right-angled containing the height and a scalene triangle with angles 24° , 153° (the supplement of 27°) and 3°
    the side opposite the 3° angle is 1000
    by let the side opposite the 24° be x, (also the hypotenuse of the right-angled triangle)

    x/sin24 = 1000/sin3
    x = 1000sin24/sin3

    let the height of the mountain be h
    sin 27 = h/x
    h = x sin27 = (1000sin24/sin3)(sin27)
    = 3528.25

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