Education Technology

Conics In Winter

Activity Overview

Students explore conic graphing using a polar notation equation and determine the effects the various variables on the graph.

Key Steps

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    Students explore how the eccentricity affects the graph of a conic section in polar coordinates. They enter the general polar equation for a conic section in Y=.

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    Before viewing the graph, students initialize the variables. They set D = 2 and E = 1.

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    They will see that for a parabola the eccentricity is 1, for a hyperbola the absolute value of the eccentricity is greater than 1, and the absolute value of the eccentricity of an ellipse is less than 1.