# Triangle Problem - Given altitude and side length

• Feb 23rd 2013, 12:15 PM
ongbakbak
Triangle Problem - Given altitude and side length
Attachment 27202

The length of the side is 30 and the altitude of the triangle is 40.
I can't seem to solve for x. I would know how to solve it if it were a right triangle. Then I could use the geometric mean theorem to solve it, however this is not the case. Any thoughts?
• Feb 23rd 2013, 12:22 PM
Re: Triangle Problem - Given altitude and side length
This page might be useful to you: Geometry: Altitude to the Hypotenuse
• Feb 23rd 2013, 12:25 PM
ongbakbak
Re: Triangle Problem - Given altitude and side length
Thanks so much for the quick reply.
This page is assuming that the triangle is a right triangle though.
In my case there is no information given whether the triangle is actually a right triangle or not.
• Feb 23rd 2013, 12:29 PM
earboth
Re: Triangle Problem - Given altitude and side length
Quote:

Originally Posted by ongbakbak
Attachment 27202

The length of the side is 30 and the altitude of the triangle is 40.
I can't seem to solve for x. You are not alone!
I would know how to solve it if it were a right triangle. Then I could use the geometric mean theorem to solve it, however this is not the case. Any thoughts?

You need to know 3 parts of a triangle to determine any other piece of it.

The angle marked x has a value between 180° and 0°. See attachment.
• Feb 23rd 2013, 12:33 PM
Re: Triangle Problem - Given altitude and side length
whoops, my mistake. what I liked about the page was the discussion on similar triangles. I'm looking for properties of altitudes online since it's been a while I've been in geometry
• Feb 23rd 2013, 12:37 PM
ongbakbak
Re: Triangle Problem - Given altitude and side length
I thought that it was unsolvable as well.
I was just a little confused because this question was on my math test and when I asked my teacher if it was solvable she told me that it was.
I think she may have just written a flawed question.
Anyways, I really appreciate the quick responses.