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Ellipses and Orbits: An Exploration of Eccentricity

Rose Sinicrope and Daniel V. Bellittiere
The Mathematics Teacher
Vol. 105, No. 3 (October 2011), pp. 220-224
DOI: 10.5951/mathteacher.105.3.0220
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/10.5951/mathteacher.105.3.0220
Page Count: 5
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Ellipses and Orbits: An Exploration of Eccentricity
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Abstract

The orbits of planets about the sun and satellites about the earth are elliptical. The shape of the orbit can be described by its eccentricity and can be modeled algebraically and graphically. The exploration of orbits enriches our understanding of the mathematical representations, definitions, and connections for ellipses.

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