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Math Help - Isolating a Variable

  1. #1
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    Isolating a Variable

    Can anyone isolate a from this equation:

    (x-a)^2 = x^2 + y^2

    thanks.

    I get as far as a = y^2/a-2x, but don't know where to go fro there.
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  2. #2
    Master Of Puppets
    pickslides's Avatar
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    I can

    (x-a)^2 = x^2 + y^2

    x-a = \sqrt{x^2 + y^2}

    -a = \sqrt{x^2 + y^2}-x

    a =x- \sqrt{x^2 + y^2}
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  3. #3
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    Thanks, it was suprisingly simple, I was just starting from the wrong place. Thanks again!

    EDIT: I've stumpled upon another algebretic type problem,
    using the above value for a is it possible to prove that
    (y/-a)^2 = -1?

    I'm stumped.
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