







A relative maximum and a relative minimum 
20151228 

From kemelo: show for the following function f(x)=x+1/x has its min value greater than its max value Answered by Penny Nom. 





100 animals 
20130225 

From Jessica: You have exactly $100.00 to spend. You must get 100 animals.
The chicks cost $0.10 each.
The pigs cost $2.00 each.
The sheep cost $5.00 each.
You must get some of each animal.
How many of each animal can you get? Answered by Penny Nom. 





Lost in the woods 
20120112 

From Liz: I am lost in the woods. I believe that I am in the woods 3 miles from a straight road. My car is located 6 miles down the road. I can walk 2miles/hour in the woods and 4 miles/hour along the road. To minimize the time needed to walk to my car, what point on the road should i walk to? Answered by Harley Weston. 





Two max/min problems 
20100411 

From Amanda: 1) Find the area of the largest isosceles triangle that canbe inscribed in a circle of radius 4 inches.
2)a solid is formed by adjoining two hemispheres to the end of a right circular cylinder. The total volume of the solid is 12 cubic centimeters. Find the radius of the cylinder that produces the minimum surface area. Answered by Tyler Wood. 





A cone circumscribed about a given hemisphere 
20100119 

From Neven: The cone of smallest possible volume is circumscribed about a given hemisphere. What is the ratio of its height to the diameter of its base?
(G.F.Simmons, Calculus with Analytic Geometry, CH4 Applications of Derivatives) Answered by Chris Fisher. 





The minimum point of a quadratic 
20091231 

From rachel: y=0.0008x^20.384x
What is the minimum point of this equation? Answered by Penny Nom. 





Ordering pizza for 162 people 
20091001 

From Jean: Need to know how to feed about 162 people 70 square inches of pizza at the lowest price.
22" Pizza is $9.95
16" Pizza is $5.25
12" Pizza is $2.99 Answered by Penny Nom. 





The optimal retail price for a cake 
20090325 

From Shawn: Your neighbours operate a successful bake shop. One of their specialties is a cream covered cake. They buy them from a supplier for $6 a cake. Their store sells 200 a week for $10 each. They can raise the price, but for every 50cent increase, 7 less cakes are sold. The supplier is unhappy with the sales, so if less than 165 cakes are sold, the cost of the cakes increases to $7.50. What is the optimal retail price per cake, and what is the bakeshop's total weekly profit? Answered by Robert Dawson. 





Partial derivatives 
20090117 

From Meghan: I have a question I've been working at for a while with maxima/minima of partial derivatives.
"Postal rules require that the length + girth of a package (dimensions x, y, l) cannot exceed 84 inches in order to be mailed.
Find the dimensions of the rectangular package of greatest volume that can be mailed.
(84 = length + girth = l + 2x + 2y)" Answered by Harley Weston. 





A max/min problem 
20090109 

From Angelica: have 400 feet of fence. Want to make a rectangular play area. What dimensions should I use to enclose the maximum possible area? Answered by Robert Dawson. 





A kennel with 3 individual pens 
20090106 

From Jean: An animal clinic wants to construct a kennel with 3 individual pens, each with a gate 4 feet wide and an area of 90 square feet. The fencing does not include the gates.
Write a function to express the fencing as a function of x.
Find the dimensions for each pen, to the nearest tenth of a foot that would produce the required area of 90 square feet but would use the least fencing. What is the minimum fencing to the nearest tenth? Answered by Harley Weston. 





How many fourlegged animals are in the field? 
20081202 

From evelyn: Some chickens, cows and sheep are in the field. Their number of legs is 12 more than twice their number of heads. How many fourlegged animals are in the field? Answered by Harley Weston. 





The minimum value of f(x)=maximum{x,x+1,2x} 
20080921 

From Saurabh: The minimum value of the function defined by f(x)=maximum{x,x+1,2x} ? Answered by Penny Nom. 





How many presses should be used? 
20080504 

From Sarah: Hi! I am in Calculus and this problem is on my study guide and i just cant figure it out!?
A printing company had eight presses, each of which can print 300 copies per hour. It costs $5.00 to set up each press for a run and 12.5+6n dollars to run n presses for an hour. How many presses should be used to print 6000 copies most profitably? Let h equal the number of hours used to print the 6000 copies. Answered by Harley Weston. 





A lidless box with square ends 
20080428 

From Chris: A lidless box with square ends is to be made from a thin sheet of metal. Determine the least area of the metal for which the volume of the box is 3.5m^3.
I did this question and my answer is 11.08m^2 is this correct? If no can you show how you got the correct answer. Answered by Stephen La Rocque and Harley Weston. 





Minimize the cost 
20080426 

From A: A power line is to be constructed from the shore of a lake to an island that is 500 m away. The closest powerline ends 4km along the shore from the point on the shore closest to the island. If it costs 5 times as much to lay the powerline underwater as along the shore, how should the line be installed to minimize the cost? Answered by Stephen La Rocque. 





A maxmin problem 
20080327 

From LSL: show that of all rectangle with a given area, the square has the smallest perimeter. Answered by Penny Nom. 





The smallest possible perimeter 
20080123 

From RS: If two points of a triangle are fixed, then how can the third point be
placed in order to get the smallest possible perimeter of the triangle. Answered by Chris Fisher and Penny Nom. 





Protecting a carrot patch 
20080103 

From Kate: A farmer has a problem with rabbits and skunks
in his rectangular carrot patch that is 21m^2 in area. Determine the
dimensions that will require the least amount of fencing if a barn can
be used to protect one side of the garden. Answered by Stephen La Rocque. 





Smallest cone containing a 4cm radius inscribed sphere 
20071219 

From Eva: A sphere with a radius of 4cm is inscribed into a cone. Find the minimum volume of the cone. Answered by Stephen La Rocque. 





Animals for sale 
20071209 

From Marion: This question has come up and I know the answer and the equation, but how do you solve this?
Please share the proof. cows=$10, pigs=$3, chickens=$.50
In any combination buy 100 animals with $100. Answered by Leeanne Boehm. 





ln(x)/x 
20071207 

From Nooruddin: How can I calculate the absolute minimum of (ln x)/x? Answered by Stephen La Rocque. 





Local maxima, minima and inflection points 
20071113 

From Russell: let f(x) = x^3  3a^2^ x +2a^4 with a parameter a > 1.
Find the coordinates of local minimum and local maximum
Find the coordinates of the inflection points Answered by Harley Weston. 





f(x) = (x^4)  4x^3 
20070722 

From Michael: I'm a student who needs your help. I hope you'll be able to answer my question.
Here it is: Given the function f(x)=(x^4)4x^3, determine the intervals over which the function is increasing, decreasing or constant. Find all zeros of f(x) and indicate any relative minimum and maximum values of the function.
Any help would be appreciated. Thank you for your time. Answered by Harley Weston. 





Minimum cost for a fixed volume 
20070418 

From James: My question goes: A silo is to be constructed and surmounted by a hemisphere. The material of the hemisphere cost twice as much as the walls of the silo. Determine the dimensions to be used of cost is to be kept to a minimum and the volume is fixed. Answered by Penny Nom. 





Minimizing a cost 
20060725 

From Edward: The cost of running a car at an average speed of V km/h is given by c= 100 + (V2 / 75) cents per hour. Find the average speed (to the nearest km/h) at which the cost of a 1000 km trip is a minimum. Answered by Stephen La Rocque. 





A fence around a pen 
20060330 

From Daryl: I hope you can help me out with the attached problem, It has been driving me crazy. Answered by Stephen La Rocque and Penny Nom. 





A maxmin problem 
20051216 

From Julie: A car travels west at 24 km/h. at the instant it passes a tree, a horse and buggy heading north at 7 km/h is 25 km south of the tree. Calculate the positions of the vessels when there is a minimum distance between them. Answered by Penny Nom. 





A variable rectangle 
20051108 

From Mussawar: find the lengths of the sides of a variable rectangle having area 36 cm^{2} when its perimeter is minimum i do not want solution of this question. i would like to know what is mean by variable rectangle.and what is difference between rectangle and variable rectangle.also what is mean by when its perimeter is minimum. Answered by Penny Nom. 





A trig problem 
20040802 

From A student: Given that the maximum value of [sin(3y2)]^2 [cos(3y2)]^2
is k. If y>7, Find the minimum value of y for which
[Sin(3y2)]^2  [cos(3y2)]^2 =k. Answered by Penny Nom. 





Maximizing the angle to the goal mouth 
20040515 

From Yogendra: You are running down the boundary line dribbling the ball in soccer or hockey. Investigate where in your run the angle the goal mouth makes with your position is at a maximum. Answered by Penny Nom. 





The volume of air flowing in windpipes 
20030502 

From James: The volume of air flowing in windpipes is given by V=kpR^{4}, where k is a constant, p is the pressure difference at each end, R is the radius. The radius will decrease with increased pressure, according to the formula: R_{o}  R = cp, where R_{o} is the windpipe radius when p=0 & c is a positive constant. R is restricted such that: 0 < 0.5*R_{o} < R < R_{o}, find the factor by which the radius of the windpipe contracts to give maximum flow? Answered by Penny Nom. 





Two problems 
20021014 

From Seçkin: i am from turkey i am a teacher in a collage i have two difficult question which i havent solve yet these are very important for me.... Answered by Claude Tardif. 





A max/min problem 
20020921 

From Evelina: A window is the shape of a rectangle with an equilateral triangle on top. The perimeter of the window is 300 cm. Find the width that will let the maximum light to enter. Answered by Penny Nom. 





A rectangular marquee 
20020507 

From Alyaa: a marquee with rectangular sides on a square base with a flat roof is to be constructed from 250 meters square of canvas. find the maximum volume of the marquee. i find this topic so hard Answered by Harley Weston. 





A farmer takes 100 animals to the market to sell. 
20020219 

From Ann: A farmer takes 100 animals to the market to sell. All are sold and $100 is earned. The prices were $5.00 per cow, $1.00 per sheep and $.05 per pig. At least one of each kind of animal was sold. How many of each kind of animal did the farmer take to market? Answered by Penny Nom. 





Getting to B in the shortest time 
20011219 

From Nancy: A motorist in a desert 5 mi. from point A, which is the nearest point on a long, straight road, wishes to get to point B on the road. If the car can travel 15 mi/hr on the desert and 39 mi/hr on the road to get to B, in the shortest possible time if...... A.) B is 5 mi. from A B.) B is 10 mi. from A C.) B is 1 mi. from A Answered by Penny Nom. 





A lighthouse problem 
20011102 

From A student: A lighthouse at apoint P is 3 miles offshore from the nearest point O of a straight beach. A store is located 5 miles down the beach from O. The lighthouse keeper can row at 4 mph and walk at 3.25 mph.
a)How far doen the beach from O should the lighthouse keeper land in order to minimize the time from the lighthouse to the store?
b)What is the minimum rowing speed the makes it faster to row all the way? Answered by Harley Weston. 





An emergency response station 
20010329 

From Tara: Three cities lying on a straight line want to jointly build an emergency response station. The distance between each town and the station should be as short as possible, so it cannot be built on the line itself, but somewhere east or west. Also, the larger the population of a city, the greater the need to place the station closer to that city. You are to minimize the overall sum of the products of the populations of each city and the square of the distance between that city and the facility. City A is 6 miles from the road's origin, City B is 19 miles away from the origin, and City C is 47 miles from the origin. The populations are 18,000 for City A, 13,000 for City B, and 11,000 for City C. Where should the station be located? Answered by Claude Tardif and Penny Nom. 





Airflow in windpipes 
20010325 

From Ena: The volume of air flowing in windpipes is given by V=kpR^{4}, where k is a constant, p is the pressure difference at each end, R is the radius. The radius will decrease with increased pressure, according to the formula: Ro  R = cp, where Ro is the windpipe radius when p=0 & c is a positive constant. R is restricted such that: 0 < 0.5*Ro < R < Ro, find the factor by which the radius of the windpipe contracts to give maximum flow? Answered by Harley Weston. 





The smaller of a and b 
20000914 

From Jenna: For any two real numbers, a and b, give a mathematical expression in terms of a and b that will yield the smaller of the two numbers. Your expression should work regardless of whether a>b, a Answered by Penny Nom. 





A problem with a quadratic 
20000809 

From David Xiao: Find the value of a such that 4x^{2} + 4(a2)x  8a^{2} + 14a + 31 = 0 has real roots whose sum of squares is minimum. Answered by Harley Weston. 





Divisors of 2000 
20000606 

From Amanda Semi:
 find the product of all the divisors of 2000
 dog trainer time has 100m of fencing to enclose a rectangular exercise yard. One side of the yard can include all or part of one side of his building. iff the side of his building is 30 m, determine the maximum area he can enclose
Answered by Claude Tardif. 





Thearcius Functionius 
20000503 

From Kevin Palmer: With the Olympics fast approaching the networks are focusing in ona new and exciting runner from Greece. Thearcius Functionius has astounded the world with his speed. He has already established new world records in the 100 meter dash and looks to improve on those times at the 2000 Summer Olympics. Thearcius Functionius stands a full 2 meters tall and the networks plan on placing a camera on the ground at some location after the finish line(in his lane) to film the history making run. The camera is set to film him from his knees(0.5 meters up from the ground) to 0.5 meters above his head at the instant he finishes the race. This is a total distance of two meters(the distance shown by the camera's lens). Answered by Harley Weston. 





Minimizing the metal in a can 
20000502 

From May Thin Zar Han: A can is to be made to hold 1 L of oil. Find the dimensions that will minimize the cost of the metal to manufacture the can. Answered by Harley Weston. 





Nim 
20000404 

From Sandy Daniel: Could you please give me any information on this Math Fair topic? Answered by Claude Tardif. 





Maximize 
20000312 

From Tara Doucet: My question is Maximize Q=xy^2 (y is to the exponent 2) where x and y are positive integers such that x + y^2 ( y is to the exponent 2)=4 Answered by Harley Weston. 





Two calculus problems 
20000303 

From Tara Doucet:
The height of a cylinder with a radius of 4 cm is increasing at rate of 2 cm per minute. Find the rate of change of the volume of the cylinder with respect to time when the height is 10 cm. A 24 cm piece of string is cut in two pieces. One piece is used to form a circle and the other to form a square. How should the string be cut so the sum of the areas is a maximum? Answered by Harley Weston. 





Slant height of a cone 
20000224 

From Jocelyn Wozney: I need help with this problem for my high school calculus class. Any help you can give me will be greatly appreciatedI am pretty stumped. "Express the volume of a cone in terms of the slant height 'e' and the semivertical angle 'x' and find the value of 'x' for which the volume is a maximum if 'e' is constant. Answered by Harley Weston. 





The shortest ladder 
19990626 

From Nicholas: A vertical wall, 2.7m high, runs parallel to the wall of a house and is at a horizontal distance of 6.4m from the house. An extending ladder is placed to rest on the top B of the wall with one end C against the house and the other end, A, resting on horizontal ground. The points A, B, and C are in a vertical plane at right angles to the wall and the ladder makes an angle@, where 0<@ Answered by Harley Weston. 





Intersection of planes 
19981122 

From Dave Rasmussen: I am a teacher of secondary mathematics with a question about the uses of Three Dimensional Coordinate Geometry. I have been teaching my students to write equations of planes and lines,  to find the intersection of these and the distance between them. What I am having difficulty finding are good applications of these techniques to "real world" situations. Can anybody help me? Answered by Walter Whiteley and Harley Weston. 





Some Calculus Problems. 
19971030 

From Roger Hung:
 What real number exceeds its square by the greatest possible amount?
 The sum of two numbers is k. show that the sum of their squares is at least 1/2 k^2.
 .
. . Answered by Penny Nom. 

