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ComputerLab3 - Geology 351 Geomath Computer Lab Quadratics...

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Geology 351 - Geomath Computer Lab – Quadratics and Settling Velocities In Chapter 3 of Mathematics: A simple tool for geologists , Waltham takes us through a brief review of quadratic equations and their roots. In the computer lab today, we explore the graphical significance of roots and use EXCEL to help us solve problems at the end of Chapter 3. GET INTO EXCEL PART I: Graph the following functions: A) y = 3x 2 -x-5 B) y=x 2 +x+3 C) y=-x 2 +2x-1 and determine their roots. Open up a blank spreadsheet. Now we want to generate a column of numbers corresponding t the x's in the above equations. The roots of these equations are present somewhere over the interval -2<x>2. So fill Column A with x values that run from -2 to 2. Use a calculation interval of 0.1 (see illustration at right). o Values of x running from -2 to 2 at a sample interval of 0.1 will occupy 41 cells (rows) from A2 through A42. The first cell has a value -2 and each consecutive cell will have a value x incremented by 0.1 37

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Enter the three equations in columns B C and D. , For example, take the first equation: y = 3x 2 -x-5 Use the proper operator notation. So enter y=3*A2^2-A2-5, as shown at right. Remember - * represents the multiplication operator ^ represents the exponentiation or power operator What does this quadratic equation look like? Remember how to Generate a plot? Start by selecting the columns containing your x and y data (see figure at right). Note the short cut icon to the scatter plot in the Quick Access Bar across the top. Did you add one earlier on? It’s often used and now might be a good time to add it in. After selecting scatter plot with smooth line and markers, your plot will look like that below. Practice your plot formatting skills. 38
Recall that from the design tab you can select Quick layouts to get grid lines. Under the Layout tab format your horizontal and vertical axes. Add appropriate labels and titles. Use the Line Style

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ComputerLab3 - Geology 351 Geomath Computer Lab Quadratics...

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