







Conic sections 
20061119 

From Joyce: My son has a project on conic sections. I need the following information on Parabola, Circle, ellipse,and hyperbola. He can't find the following information for each conic section: equations with explanations, four uses for each shape and Shape explanation. Answered by Penny Nom. 





Some applications of conic sections 
20061113 

From Burt: how are circles, ellipses, and hyperbolas used in everyday life Answered by Penny Nom. 





Uses of conic sections 
20030401 

From William: My name is William and I am doing a research paper on conic sections for my 12th grade math class. Part of the project is to find two conic sections in our world today and explain what there purpose is. I really need help in this area because I've been searching the internet for where conic sections are used in our world today and I really can't find anything. If you can tell me specific building or a pyramid that contains conic sections that would be great. Or even something in the universe would be helpful. Answered by Leeanne Boehm. 





The intersection of conics 
20021219 

From Glenda: We are studying systems of equations where two conic sections are the two equations that we are solving simultaneously. We were studying the number of solutions that are possible if you have an ellipse and a parabola. We all agree that there can be none, one, two, three or four solutions. The question that the students had for me was whether or not a portion of an ellipse and a parabola can overlap and thereby allow an infinite number of solutions. What should I tell them? Answered by Chris Fisher and Harley Weston. 





A paper model of a cone 
20020814 

From Bruce: I have made a paper model of a cone, cut a sloping section, and removed the top. I have drawn the major and minor axis on the paper surface of the section. The major axis is not symmetrical about the minor axis. To me, this is not an ellipse. To me, an ellipse is a tubular section, because this gives a symmetrical major axis. What is your opinion? Answered by Walter Whiteley and Chris Fisher. 





A polygon inscribed within an ellipse  Part 2 
20020708 

From Steven: I recently sought your advice about a problem that I have been working on for eight years or so concerning a polygon inscribed within an ellipse. I think that I may have confused matters by the way in which I put the question and hope that the enclosed diagram will clear matters up. In the ellipse below I have drawn three chords inscribed within one quadrant ( this would pertain to a twelve sided figure within the whole ellipse). These chords are exactly the same length as each other, for example if the major axis of the ellipse was 360 and the minor axis 240 I have worked out that a twelve sided figure would have sides of 78.2487. However I worked this out empirically with a method that could only be described as gruelling I would be most grateful if you could tell me of a method that would work for any ellipse and any number of sides. Answered by Chris Fisher. 





The diameter of an oval 
20010523 

From Tim: Is there a such thing as a diameter of a oval? If not, is there a way to get the circumference? Answered by Claude Tardif and Penny Nom. 





Circles, ellipses, parabolas and hyperbolas 
20010509 

From Colleen: How is an ellipse like a circle? In what way does an ellipse have a center? How is a hyperbola similar and different to an ellipse? How is a parabola similar a different to a circle ellipse and parabola? Answered by Pnny Nom. 

