Bearing issues!

• Apr 20th 2010, 06:19 AM
nsingh201
Bearing issues!
Can someone please explain what bearing is exactly? I'm not totally sure how to solve problems regarding it, as I don't understand it completely.
Heres an example:
A sailing boat sets off from a point X and heads towards Y, a point 17 km north. At point Y, it changes direction and heads towards point Z, a point 12 km away on a bearing of 90 degrees. Once at Z, the crew wants to sail back to X. Calculate:
a.) The distance ZX
b.) the bearing of X from Z
(Thinking)
• Apr 20th 2010, 08:51 AM
Bearings
Hello nsingh201
Quote:

Originally Posted by nsingh201
Can someone please explain what bearing is exactly? I'm not totally sure how to solve problems regarding it, as I don't understand it completely.
Heres an example:
A sailing boat sets off from a point X and heads towards Y, a point 17 km north. At point Y, it changes direction and heads towards point Z, a point 12 km away on a bearing of 90 degrees. Once at Z, the crew wants to sail back to X. Calculate:
a.) The distance ZX
b.) the bearing of X from Z
(Thinking)

To find the bearing of B from A:
Imagine you're standing at A.

Face due North.

Turn clockwise until you're facing B.

The angle you've turned through is the bearing of B from A.

In this question
$\tan \angle YZX = \frac{17}{12}$

$\Rightarrow \angle YZX = 54.8^o$

We want the bearing of X from Z. So, you're standing at Z, facing North. Turn clockwise until you're facing X. You've turned through
$270^o - 54.8^o$
$=215.2^o$
So that's the bearing of X from Z: $215^o$ (to the nearest degree).

• Apr 20th 2010, 09:51 AM
masters
Quote:

Originally Posted by nsingh201
Can someone please explain what bearing is exactly? I'm not totally sure how to solve problems regarding it, as I don't understand it completely.
Heres an example:
A sailing boat sets off from a point X and heads towards Y, a point 17 km north. At point Y, it changes direction and heads towards point Z, a point 12 km away on a bearing of 90 degrees. Once at Z, the crew wants to sail back to X. Calculate:
a.) The distance ZX
b.) the bearing of X from Z
(Thinking)

Hi nsingh201,

You can use the Pythagorean theorem to find the distance ZX since you turned 90 degrees East. See diagram.