Using the Pythagorean Theorem in the Real World

Geometry is a huge part of our world. Shapes can be found all around. One very prominent figure is the right triangle. This special type of triangle can be found in both natural and manmade designs. In correlation, the Pythagorean Theorem is a useful and necessary tool to utilize in order to find the measures of various types of structures and compositions.

Aside from the obvious area of math, the Pythagorean Theorem is utilized by individuals who work in the areas of architecture, design, surveying, drafting, navigation, engineering, and a number of other fields.

Architects, carpenters, and contractors use the Pythagorean Theorem on a daily basis. These individuals use special right triangle whose lengths are always integers. The measures of these right triangles form Pythagorean Triples.  Some common Pythagorean Triples are:

3-4-5

5-12-13

7-24-25

8-15-17

9-40-41

The most common of these Triples is the 3-4-5. Carpenters can use this Pythagorean Triple in order to ensure that the structure that they are building is square. If the length of one of the lines that form a right angle is a multiple of 3 and the length of the second leg is a multiple of 4, then the diagonal should measure to be a multiple of 5. For example, if  a carpenter measures a section that is 12 feet long and another section that is 16 feet long and the two sections form a right angle, the carpenter can be sure that his/her structure is square if the hypotenuse of the figure measures 20 feet.

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5 Comments on “Using the Pythagorean Theorem in the Real World”

  1. Sommer Brown Says:

    Such cool examples of real world geometry!!!

  2. Jennifer Hardin Says:

    Great pictures for visual aids! Interesting!

  3. Kim Hamlett Says:

    This information goes to prove the old saying that math is never useful after school wrong. This demonstrates how math can be very helpful in real world situations.

  4. sanat Says:

    Helpful!

  5. Fleur Says:

    I used the pictures for my pythagoras project on my school. Thanks a lot.


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