2002 AMC 10A Problems/Problem 23

Problem 23

Points $A,B,C$ and $D$ lie on a line, in that order, with $AB = CD$ and $BC = 12$. Point $E$ is not on the line, and $BE = CE = 10$. The perimeter of $\triangle AED$ is twice the perimeter of $\triangle BEC$. Find $AB$.

$\text{(A)}\ 15/2 \qquad \text{(B)}\ 8 \qquad \text{(C)}\ 17/2 \qquad \text{(D)}\ 9 \qquad \text{(E)}\ 19/2$


First, we draw an altitude to $BC$ from $E$. Let it intersect at $M$. As $\triangle BEC$ is isosceles, we immediately get $MB=MC=6$, so the altitude is $8$. Now, let $AB=CD=x$. Using the Pythagorean Theorem on $\triangle EMA$, we find $AE=\sqrt{x^2+12x+100}$. From symmetry, $DE=\sqrt{x^2+12x+100}$ as well. Now, we use the fact that the perimeter of $\triangle AED$ is twice the perimeter of $\triangle BEC$.

We have $2\sqrt{x^2+12x+100}+2x+12=2(32)$ so $\sqrt{x^2+12x+100}=26-x$. Squaring both sides, we have $x^2+12x+100=676-52x+x^2$ which nicely rearranges into $64x=576\rightarrow{x=9}$. Hence, AB is 9 so our answer is $\boxed{\text{(D)}}$.

Simpler Solution

Let $M$ be the foot of the altitude from $E$ to $BC.$ Then $MB=MC=6$ because $\triangle BEC$ is isosceles. By the Pythagorean triple $(6,8,10)$ the altitude is $8.$ Since $(8,15,17)$ is the only primitive Pythagorean triple with leg $8,$ we test $AE=DE=17,AM=DM=15.$ Since $2(10+10+12)=(17+17+2\cdot 15)$ this works, giving us $AB=15-6=\boxed{\text{(D)}\ 9}.$


See Also

2002 AMC 10A (ProblemsAnswer KeyResources)
Preceded by
Problem 22
Followed by
Problem 24
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All AMC 10 Problems and Solutions

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