Word Problems/math


a wire is 36 meter long is cut into two pieces, each piece is bent to form a rectangle which is 1 centimeter longer that its width. How long should each piece be to minimize the sum of the areas of the two rectangles?

Let x be the length of the first piece. The length of the second piece is 36-x meters.
For simplicity, let d = difference between length and width of rectangles = 1 cm = 0.01 m.

Calculate areas in terms of x and d.
Set the first derivative of total area to 0, then solve for x.

To minimize area of rectangles, both pieces should be 18 meters long.

I double-checked it on a spreadsheet. Minimum total area when the pieces are 18 meters long  

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Janet Yang


Word problems are my favorite type of math questions! I would not feel comfortable answering questions that require specialized knowledge (Physics, Statistics, etc.) because I have not studied these in depth.


I tutor students (fifth through twelfth grades) and am a Top Contributor on Yahoo!Answers with over 24,000 math solutions.

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