1986 AIME Problems/Problem 9
Construct cevians , and through . Place masses of on , and respectively; then has mass .
Notice that has mass . On the other hand, by similar triangles, . Hence by mass points we find that Similarly, we obtain Summing these three equations yields
Let the points at which the segments hit the triangle be called as shown above. As a result of the lines being parallel, all three smaller triangles and the larger triangle are similar (). The remaining three sections are parallelograms.
Since is a parallelogram, we find , and similarly . So . Thus . By the same logic, .
Since , we have the proportion:
Doing the same with , we find that . Now, .
Define the points the same as above.
Let , , , , and
The key theorem we apply here is that the ratio of the areas of 2 similar triangles is the ratio of a pair of corresponding sides squared.
Let the length of the segment be and the area of the triangle be , using the theorem, we get:
, , adding all these together and using we get
Using corresponding angles from parallel lines, it is easy to show that , since and are parallelograms, it is easy to show that
Now we have the side length ratio, so we have the area ratio , by symmetry, we have and
Substituting these into our initial equation, we have answer follows after some hideous computation.
Refer to the diagram in solution 2; let , , and . Now, note that , , and are similar, so through some similarities we find that . Similarly, we find that and , so . Now, again from similarity, it follows that , , and , so adding these together, simplifying, and solving gives .
Refer to the diagram from Solution 2. Notice that because , , and are parallelograms, , , and .
Let . Then, because , , so . Simplifying the LHS and cross-multiplying, we have . From the same triangles, we can find that .
is also similar to . Since , . We now have , and . Cross multiplying, we have . Using the previous equation to substitute for , we have: This is a linear equation in one variable, and we can solve to get
- I did not show the multiplication in the last equation because most of it cancels out when solving.
(Note: I chose to be only because that is what I had written when originally solving. The solution would work with other choices for .)
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