2004 AMC 10A Problems/Problem 20


Points $E$ and $F$ are located on square $ABCD$ so that $\triangle BEF$ is equilateral. What is the ratio of the area of $\triangle DEF$ to that of $\triangle ABE$?

[asy] unitsize(3 cm);  pair A, B, C, D, E, F;  A = (0,0); B = (1,0); C = (1,1); D = (0,1); E = (0,Tan(15)); F = (1 - Tan(15),1);  draw(A--B--C--D--cycle); draw(B--E--F--cycle);  label("$A$", A, SW); label("$B$", B, SE); label("$C$", C, NE); label("$D$", D, NW); label("$E$", E, W); label("$F$", F, N); [/asy]

$\mathrm{(A) \ } \frac{4}{3} \qquad \mathrm{(B) \ } \frac{3}{2} \qquad \mathrm{(C) \ } \sqrt{3} \qquad \mathrm{(D) \ } 2 \qquad \mathrm{(E) \ } 1+\sqrt{3}$

Solution 1

Since triangle $BEF$ is equilateral, $EA=FC$, and $EAB$ and $FCB$ are $SAS$ congruent. Thus, triangle $DEF$ is an isosceles right triangle. So we let $DE=x$. Thus $EF=EB=FB=x\sqrt{2}$. If we go angle chasing, we find out that $\angle AEB=75^{\circ}$, thus $\angle ABE=15^{\circ}$. $\frac{AE}{EB}=\sin{15^{\circ}}=\frac{\sqrt{6}-\sqrt{2}}{4}$. Thus $\frac{AE}{x\sqrt{2}}=\frac{\sqrt{6}-\sqrt{2}}{4}$, or $AE=\frac{x(\sqrt{3}-1)}{2}$. Thus $AB=\frac{x(\sqrt{3}+1)}{2}$, and $[ABE]=\frac{x^2}{4}$, and $[DEF]=\frac{x^2}{2}$. Thus the ratio of the areas is $\boxed{\mathrm{(D)}\ 2}$


Solution 2 (Non-trig)

WLOG, let the side length of $ABCD$ be 1. Let $DE = x$. It suffices that $AE = 1 - x$. Then triangles $ABE$ and $CBF$ are congruent by HL, so $CF = AE$ and $DE = DF$. We find that $BE = EF = x \sqrt{2}$, and so, by the Pythagorean Theorem, we have $(1 - x)^2 + 1 = 2x^2.$ This yields $x^2 + 2x = 2$, so $x^2 = 2 - 2x$. Thus, the desired ratio of areas is \[\frac{\frac{x^2}{2}}{\frac{1-x}{2}} = \frac{x^2}{1 - x} = \boxed{\text{(D) }2}.\]

Solution 4 (System of Equations)

Assume $AB=1$. Then, $FC$ is $x$ and $ED$ is $1-x$. We see that using $HL$, $FCB$ is congruent to EAB. Using Pythagoras of triangles $FCB$ and $FDE$ we get $2{(1-x)}^2=x^2+1$. Expanding, we get $2x^2-4x+2=x^2+1$. Simplifying gives $x^2-4x+1=0$ solving using completing the square (or other methods) gives 2 answers: $2-\sqrt{3}$ and $2+\sqrt{3}$. Because $x < 1$, $x=2-\sqrt{3}$. Using the areas, the answer is $\boxed{\text{(D) }2}$

Solution 5

First, since $\bigtriangleup BEF$ is equilateral and $ABCD$ is a square, by the Hypothenuse Leg Theorem, $\bigtriangleup ABE$ is congruent to $\bigtriangleup CBF$. Then, assume length $AB = BC = x$ and length $DE = DF = y$, then $AE = FC = x - y$. $\bigtriangleup BEF$ is equilateral, so $EF = EB$ and $EB^2 = EF^2$, it is given that $ABCD$ is a square and $\bigtriangleup DEF$ and $\bigtriangleup ABE$ are right triangles. Then we use the Pythagorean theorem to prove that $AB^2 + AE^2 = EB^2$ and since we know that $EB^2 = EF^2$ and $EF^2 = DE^2 + DF^2$, which means $AB^2 + AE^2 = DE^2 + DF^2$. Now we plug in the variables and the equation becomes $x^2 + (x-y)^2 = 2y^2$, expand and simplify and you get $2x^2 - 2xy = y^2$. We want the ratio of area of $\bigtriangleup DEF$ to $\bigtriangleup ABE$. Expressed in our variables, the ratio of the area is $\frac{y^2}{x^2 - xy}$ and we know $2x^2 - 2xy = y^2$, so the ratio must be $2$. So, the answer is $\boxed{\text{(D) }2}$

Video Solution


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Video Solution by TheBeautyofMath



See also

2004 AMC 10A (ProblemsAnswer KeyResources)
Preceded by
Problem 19
Followed by
Problem 21
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