Microsoft Office Tutorials and References

In Depth Information

**Solving Right Triangles**

The Pythagorean theorem states that

Height^2 + Base^2 = Hypotenuse^2

Therefore, if you know two sides of a right triangle, you can calculate the remaining side. The

formula to calculate a right triangle’s height (given the length of the hypotenuse and base) is as

follows:

=SQRT((hypotenuse^2) – (base^2))

The formula to calculate a right triangle’s base (given the length of the hypotenuse and height) is

as follows:

=SQRT((hypotenuse^2) – (height^2))

The formula to calculate a right triangle’s hypotenuse (given the length of the base and height) is

as follows:

=SQRT((height^2)+(base^2))

Other useful trigonometric identities are

SIN(A) = Height/Hypotenuse

SIN(B) = Base/Hypotenuse

COS(A) = Base/Hypotenuse

COS(B) = Height/Hypotenuse

TAN(A) = Height/Base

SIN(A) = Base/Height

Excel’s trigonometric functions all assume that the angle arguments are in radians. To

convert degrees to radians, use the RADIANS function. To convert radians to degrees,

use the DEGREES function.

If you know the height and base, you can use the following formula to calculate the angle formed

by the hypotenuse and base (angle A):

=ATAN(height/base)