The Uses And Importance of Trigonometry in Life
- Aug 19, 2016
- Sudipto Das
Trigonometry is a specific math division concerned with the different properties of trigonometric functions as well as their applications for determining the unknown sides and angles of a triangle.
Trigonometry is a significant part of mathematics and is usually introduced in high school math curriculum. This seemingly abstract subject is of paramount importance is daily life.
Let’s go through a few applications of trigonometry in our daily life and also go down the memory for a minute to see some historical uses of the same.
Initially, trigonometry was mainly used in the field of astronomy. Before the 16th century, astronomy was completely based on the concept that said that the Earth’s placed in the center of nested spheres. Trigonometry was used to calculate the positions of other planets and stars.
Modern day trigonometry is mainly influenced from the Babylonians, the Greeks, the Sumerians and the Indian astronomers.
The Importance of Trigonometry
There are several trigonometric applications in our daily life and more often than not, we are not even aware of that fact. This is mainly because we are too accustomed to it and we don’t even notice it at a glance.
Do remember that it will be near impossible to build houses, cars etc. without the knowledge and application of trigonometry. Similarly, there are various other forms of technology that are developed through the application of some concepts of trigonometry.
Major technological fields that implement concepts of trigonometry
A handful number of prominent technological fields implement basic as well as a few advanced trigonometric concepts for research, development, and production. Some prominent ones are mentioned below:
- Acoustics (It’s the science of studying mechanical waves in solids, liquids and gasses including topics like vibration, sound, infra-sound and ultrasound),
- Number theory,
- Electrical engineering,
- Computer graphics,
- Civil engineering,
- Game development,
- Mechanical engineering,
- Medical imaging,
- Cartography (It’s the process of creation of maps),
- Seismology (It is the branch of science that deals with the study of earthquakes),
- Crystallography (It’s the study of the arrangement of atoms in a crystal).
There are many fields of technology other than the ones mentioned above that do implement trigonometry to a certain extent. We have pointed out those specific fields that we felt are more important from this topic’s point of view.
Detailed uses of trigonometry
The primary application of trigonometry is mainly found in studies related to measurements of lengths and distances. But what makes this process a stand out one among the lot is that this one can be used for unusual and difficult measurements like measuring the length of a mountain. Can you imagine a situation where the measurement has to be taken with a measuring tape? It’ll be near impossible, inaccurate and will be too time-consuming. Trigonometry sorts this out. How does it do that? We’ll come to that soon.
With the help of trignometry, we usually measure the height of a mountain. The known unit should only be the length of the shadow of the mountain. After that, a simple trigonometric formula should be enough to do the job. (The shadow is considered to be the base. The angle is 90°. Then tan ϑ (ϑ=90°) is used to come to the result. For a detailed explanation for calculating the height of structures, you can refer to this article.)
Trigonometry is used extensively for generating complex and detailed images on the computer. This generation of images is done through a process known as triangulation.
Trigonometry is extensively applied in designing blue-prints of a structure like a building, a bridge and other similar structures. All the necessary scaled down measurements are generally done with the help of trigonometry.
Trigonometry is a pretty important math topic and needs to be comprehended early at the time of its introduction so that the student doesn’t face any difficulty when the difficulty level increases with the increase in grades. Online math tuition can definitely help them out in this matter.
(Image courtesy: https://goo.gl/KxctAA)
Sudipto writes technical and educational content periodically for wizert.com and backs it up with extensive research and relevant examples. He's an avid reader and a tech enthusiast at the same time with a little bit of “Arsenal Football Club” thrown in as well. He's got a B.Tech in Electronics and Instrumentation.
Follow him on twitter @SudiptoDas1993
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