Solving Literal Equations and Formulas
Remember, to solve linear equations we “get rid of”
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Use these procedures to evaluate the following formulas
and to solve for an indicated variable:
1. Use the formula d = rt, where d is distance, r is rate of speed, t is time,
to (a) find the distance
traveled by a car that travels 5 hours at 60 mph. (b) to find the rate of speed
of a car that
travels 450 miles in 9 hours first solve for r.
2. The formula for the area of a triangle is A = (1/2) bh
where b is the length of the base of the
triangle and h is the height or altitude of the triangle.
Use the formula to find the base of a triangle that has an area of 60 square
meters and
a height of 7 meters by first solving for b.
When working with scientific formulas it is often helpful
to solve the formula itself for a given
variable – rather than substitute values. In each of the following equations,
solve the formula for
the indicated variable, “getting rid of “ variables rather than numbers.
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