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Circles Maths

Circles Maths

Circles can exist within themselves or be mapped onto graphs where we can give them equations.

Circles are a 2-dimensional shape where a single line is rotated around a point ator if in radians.

Circle equations

Some well-known circle equations include:

Parts of a circle diagram

To understand circle diagrams, you need to be familiar with partitioning circles into parts in maths.

Circles Maths Circle Diagram StudySmarterCircle diagram. Jaime Nichols StudySmarter Originals

  • Circumference (C): the perimeter of the circle.

  • Radius (r): the distance between any point on the circumference and the centre of the circle.

  • Diameter (d): the distance from one side of the circumference to the other which goes through the centre of the circle.

  • Sector: an area bordered by two radii.

  • Chord: the distance from one side of the circumference without going through the centre of the circle.

  • Segment: the area between a chord and the circumference.

  • Tangent: an exterior line that touches the circumference of the circle at one point.

  • Arc: a proportion of the circumference of the circle

Circle theorems

There are eight circle theorems that describe the angle properties of circles.

  • Circle Theorem 1: Angles in the same segment are equal.

  • Circle Theorem 2: In a cyclical quadrilateral, the sum of the opposite angles is equal to 180.

A cyclical quadrilateral is all the points in a quadrilateral that lie on the circumference of the circle.

  • Circle Theorem 3: The angle at the centre of a circle is half the angle at the circumference.

  • Circle Theorem 4: The perpendicular bisector of a chord travels through the circle centre.

  • Circle Theorem 5: The radius and a tangent of a circle will meet perpendicular to one another.

  • Circle Theorem 6: Two tangent lines that meet at a point have the same length.

  • Circle Theorem 7: A triangle within the circle, whereby the hypotenuse of the triangle is the same as the diameter of the circle, has an angle at the circumference of 90.

  • Circle Theorem 8: Alternate Angle Theorem.

The basic circle equation

All circles can be represented by the formula: where (a, b) are the coordinates of the centre of this circle and r is the radius of the circle.

A circle with the centre at (5, 9) with a radius of 10 will have the equation of which is also equal to

When the circle has a centre at the origin, then it has no constants attached to the x- or y-coordinate: .

To find out if a coordinate lies on the circumference of the circle, you substitute the x- and y- coordinate into the circle equation. If the equation solves to equal the circle radius, the point lies on the circle circumference.

Prove that (4, 12) lies on the circumference of the circle .

The answer to the circle equation when you substitute (4, 12) is the same as the (20); therefore, the point (4,12) must lie on the circle circumference.

Forming circle equations from a graph

Forming an equation from a circle requires two pieces of information: the circle centre and the radius of the circle.

To find the radius of the circle, you need to:

  1. Draw a line from the centre to the circumference (which will be the radius), then another line from the intersection of the radius down to a horizontal line from the centre.

  2. As you are calculating the radius of the circle, you need to find the other two sides of the triangle, and you can do that by counting the squares.

  3. As this is a right-angled triangle with no angles shown, you can use Pythagoras theorem to find the radius of the circle.

Pythagoras theorem is a formula to calculate the sides of a right-angled triangle: ; where c is the hypotenuse.

For the first step, where possible, try and put the radius on points on the graph. This will help you later because you will be working with whole numbers.

Find the radius of the circle with the centre (4, 1) shown on the graph below.

Circles Maths Graph of circle example StudySmarter

  1. Drawing the radius: The coordinate (7, 5) lies on the circumference. The radius is the line between the centre (4, 1) and the point on the circumference (7, 5).
Circles Maths Pythagoras triangle circle example StudySmarter2. Finding the values of the sides of the triangle: By counting the squares, the horizontal line is 3, and the vertical line is 4.Circles maths Pythagoras Triangle Studysmarter

Pythagoras Triangle derived from Circle 1 - Jaime Nichols - Studysmarter Originals

3. Finding the value for the radius using Pythagoras theorem:

However, the radius of the circle is a distance and, therefore, can only be a positive, so r = 5

The derived circle equation

Sometimes circle equations can be formed in the expression , whereby the circle centre is (-a, -b) and the radius of the circle is .

Circle B has an equation of . What is the centre of Circle B? What is the radius of Circle B?

  • The centre of the circle is , where a = -8 and b = 5.
  • The radius of the circle is

Deriving this circle formula

The circle formula can be derived from the basic circle formula .

  1. Expand out the brackets out of the original circle equation to get
  2. Rearrange so that the form resembles the derived equation:
  3. Let so the equation becomes

The last stage of deriving the equation can help you remember the formula for the radius. As , you can change the subject to : . Therefore,

Rearranging back to the basic circle equation

You could be asked to rearrange into and to do so, you need to complete the square.

It is helpful to group the x-'s and y-'s together to make it easier for you to complete the square.

Rearrange into the form

1. Organise the equation so that the x- and y- equation 2. Complete the square on each variable For the x-axis: For the y-axis: 3. Combining these equations: 4. Rearrange to get into the form

Circles - Key takeaways

  • Circles can be described and labelled in lots of different ways, which you should be able to recognise and understand.
  • Circles can be written as an equation in the form where the centre of the circle is (a, b) and the radius of the circle is r.
  • Circles can also be written in the form where the centre of the circle is (-a, -b) and the radius of the circle is
  • To find the radius of a circle from the graph, you create a right-angled triangle using the radius of the circle and solve using Pythagoras theorem.

Frequently Asked Questions about Circles Maths

You create a right angle triangle where the hypotenuse is the radius of the circle and you solve for r using Pythagoras theorem.

 All circles can be written as an equation in the form (x-a)^2+(y-b)^2=r^2 as well as in the derived form:  x^2+y^2+2ax+2bx+c=0.

Final Circles Maths Quiz

Question

What is the diameter of the circle?

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Answer

The distance from one side of the circle to another going through the centre.

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What is the circumference of a circle?

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Answer

The total perimeter of a circle.

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What is the radius of a circle?


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The distance between the centre of the circle and the circumference.

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What is a sector?

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An area bordered by two radii.

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What is a chord?


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A line that goes from one side of circumference to the other without going through the centre.

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What is a segment?


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Answer

An area bordered by a chord or a circumference.

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What is a tangent?


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A line outside of the circle that touches the circumference of a circle at one point.

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 What is an arc?


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Answer

A section of the circumference.

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What does it mean if something is perpendicular?

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Answer

That it intersects with something at a right angle

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What does it mean when something bisects?

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It intersects a line through the middle, and the line on either side is the same length.

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What are the two things you need to substitute into the linear formula to create an equation for the perpendicular bisector?


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Answer

The point of bisection (midpoint) and the gradient of the perpendicular bisector.

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Question

How do you calculate the perpendicular gradient?

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Answer

You need to do the inverse reciprocal of the original gradient.

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Question

A line segment from (7, 7) to (22, -14) is perpendicularly bisected by line 1. What is the equation for line 1?


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Answer

 y = 0.71x - 13.795

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Question

A line segment from (-10, -10) to (-1, -1) is perpendicular bisected by line 1. What is the equation for line 1?


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Answer

y = -1x - 11

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A line segment from (2, -7) to (12, -19) is perpendicularly bisected by line 1. What is the equation for line 1?

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Answer

y = 0.83x - 18.81

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A line segment from (-8, -6) to (2, 4) is perpendicularly bisected by line 1. What is the equation for line 1?


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Answer

y = -1x - 4

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A line segment from (0, 0) to (5, -20) is perpendicularly bisected by line 1. What is the equation for line 1?


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Answer

0.25x - 10.625

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A line segment from (-4, -3) to (-1, 3) is perpendicularly bisected by line 1. What is the equation for line 1?


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Answer

 y = -0.5x - 1.25

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A line segment from (2, 7) to (14, -1) is perpendicularly bisected by line 1. What is the equation for line 1?


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Answer

y = 1.5x - 9

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A line segment from (-10, 10) to (5, -1) is perpendicularly bisected by line 1. What is the equation for line 1?


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y = 1.36x + 7.9

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A line segment from (-2, 7) to (8, -18) is perpendicularly bisected by line 1. What is the equation for line 1?


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y = 0.4x - 6.7

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A line segment from (-10, 7) to (-1, -1) is perpendicularly bisected by line 1. What is the equation for line 1?


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y = -1.83x + 12.235

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A line segment from (-11, 5) to (-2, 20) is perpendicularly bisected by line 1. What is the equation for line 1?


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y = -0.6x + 8.6

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A line segment from (2, 5) to (6, 15) is perpendicularly bisected by line 1. What is the equation for line 1?


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Answer

y=0.4x+11.6

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A line segment from (5,9) to (12, -5) is perpendicularly bisected by line 1. What is the equation for line 1?

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Answer

y=0.5x-2.25

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What is a sector?

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Answer

A sector of a circle is a proportion of a circle where two slides are radii

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Question

How do you find the sector of a circle?

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Answer

To find the sector of a circle you need to use one of the formulas for the area of the sector. Which one you use is dependent on whether the angle at the centre is in radians or in degrees

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There are two formulas to find the area of a sector of a circle. What decides which one you use?

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Answer

Whether the angle at the centre of the circle is in degrees or radians

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What is an arc length?


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Answer

A proportion of the circle’s circumference, which is defined by the sector.

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Circle A has a diameter of 10cm. A sector of circle A has an angle of 120. What is the area of this sector? 


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Answer

105 (3 s.f)

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Circle B has a diameter of 4cm. A sector of circle B has an angle of 20. What is the area of this sector? 


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Answer

2.79 (3 s.f)

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Circle D has a radius of 10cm. A sector of circle D has an angle of 60. What is the arc length of this sector? 


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Answer

10.5 (3 s.f.).

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Circle E has a diameter of 15cm. A sector of circle E has an angle of 90. What is the arc length of this sector? 


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Answer

11.8 (3 s.f.)

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What are radians?


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Answer

An alternative to degrees for measuring angles.

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Question

Circle F has a diameter of 9cm. A sector of circle E has an angle of 115. What is the arc length of this sector?


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Answer

9.03 (3 s.f.)

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Question

Circle G has a radius of 5cm. Within Circle G, there is a sector with an angle of 1.2 radians. What is the area of this sector?


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Answer

15

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Question

Circle H has a radius of 11cm. Within Circle H, there is a sector with the angle x radians and an area of 222.9cm2. What is the value for the angle of this sector?


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Answer

3.8 radians

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Question

What is a tangent?

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Answer

A tangent is a line which touches the circle at a specific point

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Question

What are the steps to finding the tangent of a circle at a specific point?

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Answer

Find the gradient of the radius using the centre of the circle and the point of interception; find the gradient of the tangent using the radius; using a linear equation formula, the gradient of the tangent and the point of interception, create a linear equation for the tangent 

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Question

What does the radius of a circle act as when we are finding the tangent?


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Answer

A normal line perpendicular to the tangent

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Question

How do you find the gradient of the tangent using the gradient of the radius of the circle?


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Answer

Find the negative reciprocal of the gradient of radius of the circle

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Question

Circle B has the equation (x+4)2+(y+2)2=10. A tangent touches Circle B at point (-1, -1). What is the equation of the tangent?


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Answer

 y=3x+2

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Circle C has the equation (x-3)2+(y-2)2=20.  A tangent touches Circle C at point (7, 4). What is the equation of the tangent?


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Answer

y=-2x+18

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Circle D has the equation (x-3)2+(y-2)2=20.  A tangent touches Circle D at point (7, 0). What is the equation of the tangent?


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Answer

y=2x-14

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Question

Circle E has the equation (x+1)2+(y+1)2=18. A tangent touches Circle E at point (2, 2). What is the equation of the tangent?


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Answer

y=-x+4

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Question

Circle F has the equation (x+1)2+(y+1)2=18. A tangent touches Circle F at point (2, -4). What is the equation of the tangent?


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Answer

y=x-6

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Question

Circle G has the equation (x-5)2+(y+2)2=8. A tangent touches Circle G at point (7, 0). What is the equation of the tangent?

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Answer

y=x+7

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Question

Circle H has the equation (x-5)2+(y+2)2=8. A tangent touches Circle H at point (7, -4). What is the equation of the tangent?


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Answer

 y=x-11

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Question

Circle I has the equation (x-4)2+(y-6)2=5. A tangent touches Circle I at point (2, 5). What is the equation of the tangent?


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Answer

y=-2x+9

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Question

Circle K has the equation x2+y2=32. A tangent touches Circle J at point (4, -4). What is the equation of the tangent?


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Answer

y=x-8

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