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Math Help - Find distance from given point to xy-plane?

  1. #1
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    Find distance from given point to xy-plane?

    so this is my first hw assignment for my multivariable calculus class and i can't seem to figure out how to find the distance from the point (3,7,-5) to the xy-plane. would it just be the distance perpendicularly between the point and the plane, or is there a formula that i have to use?
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  2. #2
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    Re: Find distance from given point to xy-plane?

    Quote Originally Posted by damnireekrad View Post
    so this is my first hw assignment for my multivariable calculus class and i can't seem to figure out how to find the distance from the point (3,7,-5) to the xy-plane. would it just be the distance perpendicularly between the point and the plane, <--- yes
    or is there a formula that i have to use? <--- that depends
    Distances between a plane and a point are measured perpendicularly. That means in your case the distance in question is nothing but the absolute value of the z-coordinate.

    If the plane is not parallel to the coordinate planes you have to use a formula or you calculate the minimum of all possible distances, using calculus.
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  3. #3
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    Re: Find distance from given point to xy-plane?

    Long before you learn Calculus or even general concepts of Cartesian coordinates, you should have learned what "coordinates" mean. In the xy-plane, x is the distance from the point (x,y) to the y-axis and y is the distance to the x-axis. In three dimensions, x is the distance from the point (x, y, z) to the yz-plane, y is the distance to the xz-plane, and z is the distance to the xy-plane.
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  4. #4
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    Re: Find distance from given point to xy-plane?

    ahh alright, thank you for clarifying!
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