# Difference between revisions of "1998 AIME Problems/Problem 14"

## Problem

An $m\times n\times p$ rectangular box has half the volume of an $(m + 2)\times(n + 2)\times(p + 2)$ rectangular box, where $m, n,$ and $p$ are integers, and $m\le n\le p.$ What is the largest possible value of $p$?

## Solution $$2mnp = (m+2)(n+2)(p+2)$$

Let’s solve for $p$: $$(2mn)p = p(m+2)(n+2) + 2(m+2)(n+2)$$ $$[2mn - (m+2)(n+2)]p = 2(m+2)(n+2)$$ $$p = \frac{2(m+2)(n+2)}{mn - 2n - 2m - 4} = \frac{2(m+2)(n+2)}{(m-2)(n-2) - 8}$$

Clearly, we want to minimize the denominator, so we test $(m-2)(n-2) - 8 = 1 \Longrightarrow (m-2)(n-2) = 9$. The possible pairs of factors of $9$ are $(1,9)(3,3)$. These give $m = 3, n = 11$ and $m = 5, n = 5$ respectively. Substituting into the numerator, we see that the first pair gives $130$, while the second pair gives $98$. We now check that $130$ is optimal, setting $a=m-2$, $b=n-2$ in order to simplify calculations. Since $$0 \le (a-1)(b-1) \implies a+b \le ab+1$$ We have $$p = \frac{2(a+4)(b+4)}{ab-8} = \frac{2ab+8(a+b)+32}{ab-8} \le \frac{2ab+8(ab+1)+32}{ab-8} = 10 + \frac{120}{ab-8} \le 130$$ Where we see $(m,n)=(3,11)$ gives us our maximum value of $\boxed{130}$.

• Note that $0 \le (a-1)(b-1)$ assumes $m,n \ge 3$, but this is clear as $\frac{2m}{m+2} = \frac{(n+2)(p+2)}{np} > 1$ and similarly for $n$.

## See also

 1998 AIME (Problems • Answer Key • Resources) Preceded byProblem 13 Followed byProblem 15 1 • 2 • 3 • 4 • 5 • 6 • 7 • 8 • 9 • 10 • 11 • 12 • 13 • 14 • 15 All AIME Problems and Solutions

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