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Math Help - Tangent plane to double sided cone

  1. #1
    Pur
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    Tangent plane to double sided cone

    Given z^2=x^2+y^2, show that every tangent plane goes through the origin.

    We know that the normal to the tangent plane is given by the grad(F) and can spilt the function into an upper and lower half to find that
    f(x,y,z)=\sqrt{x^2+y^2}\Rightarrow grad(F)=(\frac{x}{\sqrt{x^2+y^2}},\frac{y}{\sqrt{x  ^2+y^2}},0). But when we evaluate at a point P(x_0,y_0,z_0) we get:
    \frac{x_0}{\sqrt{x_0^2+y_0^2}}(x-x_0)+\frac{y_0}{\sqrt{x_0^2+y_0^2}}(y-y_0)=0. From what we can see this need not be zero at (0,0,0)
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  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pur View Post

    Given z^2=x^2+y^2, show that every tangent plane goes through the origin.

    We know that the normal to the tangent plane is given by the grad(F) and can spilt the function into an upper and lower half to find that
    f(x,y,z)=\sqrt{x^2+y^2}\Rightarrow grad(F)=(\frac{x}{\sqrt{x^2+y^2}},\frac{y}{\sqrt{x  ^2+y^2}},0). But when we evaluate at a point P(x_0,y_0,z_0) we get:
    \frac{x_0}{\sqrt{x_0^2+y_0^2}}(x-x_0)+\frac{y_0}{\sqrt{x_0^2+y_0^2}}(y-y_0)=0. From what we can see this need not be zero at (0,0,0)
    to find the gradient you need to write your surface in the form f(x,y,z)=0 first. the equation of the cone is f(x,y,z)=x^2+y^2-z^2=0. thus: \nabla f(P)=(2x_0,2y_0,-2z_0), and so the

    equation of the tangent plane at P is: 2x_0(x-x_0)+2y_0(y-y_0)-2z_0(z-z_0)=0, which after simplifying gives us: x_0x+y_0y-z_0z=0. \ \Box
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  3. #3
    Pur
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    Thank you, why is it that we need to use IFT since z=\sqrt{x^2+y^2} is a valid equation for the upper half?
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