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The Ellipse - Problem 9

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Teacher/Instructor Alissa Fong
Alissa Fong

MA, Stanford University
Teaching in the San Francisco Bay Area

Alissa is currently a teacher in the San Francisco Bay Area and Brightstorm users love her clear, concise explanations of tough concepts

Half of the length of the major axis will tell us the value of "a," and half of the minor axis will tell us the the value of "b." If the major axis is vertical, the x^2 binomial will be above b^2, and if the major axis is horizontal, then the x^2 binomial will be above a^2. An ellipse equation will always be equal to one. To find the coordinates of the foci, we use the relationship a^2 - b^2 = c^2 to find the "c" value, and then calculate the points that are that distance away from the center along the major axis.

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