2018 AMC 12B Problems/Problem 25

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Problem

Circles $\omega_1$, $\omega_2$, and $\omega_3$ each have radius $4$ and are placed in the plane so that each circle is externally tangent to the other two. Points $P_1$, $P_2$, and $P_3$ lie on $\omega_1$, $\omega_2$, and $\omega_3$ respectively such that $P_1P_2=P_2P_3=P_3P_1$ and line $P_iP_{i+1}$ is tangent to $\omega_i$ for each $i=1,2,3$, where $P_4 = P_1$. See the figure below. The area of $\triangle P_1P_2P_3$ can be written in the form $\sqrt{a}+\sqrt{b}$ for positive integers $a$ and $b$. What is $a+b$?

[asy] unitsize(12); pair A = (0, 8/sqrt(3)), B = rotate(-120)*A, C = rotate(120)*A; real theta = 41.5; pair P1 = rotate(theta)*(2+2*sqrt(7/3), 0), P2 = rotate(-120)*P1, P3 = rotate(120)*P1; filldraw(P1--P2--P3--cycle, gray(0.9)); draw(Circle(A, 4)); draw(Circle(B, 4)); draw(Circle(C, 4)); dot(P1); dot(P2); dot(P3); defaultpen(fontsize(10pt)); label("$P_1$", P1, E*1.5); label("$P_2$", P2, SW*1.5); label("$P_3$", P3, N); label("$\omega_1$", A, W*17); label("$\omega_2$", B, E*17); label("$\omega_3$", C, W*17); [/asy]

$\textbf{(A) }546\qquad\textbf{(B) }548\qquad\textbf{(C) }550\qquad\textbf{(D) }552\qquad\textbf{(E) }554$

Solution

Let $O_i$ be the center of circle $\omega_i$ for $i=1,2,3$, and let $K$ be the intersectoin of lines $O_1P_1$ and $O_2P_2$. Because $\angle P_1P_2P_3 = 60^\circ$, it follows that $\triangle P_2KP_1$ is a $30-60-90^\circ$ triangle. Let $d=P_1K$; then $P_2K = 2d$ and $P_1P_2 = \sqrt 3d$. The Law of Cosines in $\triangle O_1KO_2$ gives \[8^2 = (d+4)^2 + (2d-4)^2 - 2(d+4)(2d-4)\cos 60^\circ,\]which simplifies to $3d^2 - 12d - 16 = 0$. The positive solution is $d = 2 + \tfrac23\sqrt{21}$. Then $P_1P_2 = \sqrt 3 d = 2\sqrt 3 + 2\sqrt 7$, and the required area is \[\frac{\sqrt 3}4\cdot\left(2\sqrt 3 + 2\sqrt 7\right)^2 = 10\sqrt 3 + 6\sqrt 7 = \sqrt{300} + \sqrt{252}.\]The requested sum is $300 + 252 = \boxed{552}$.

See Also

2018 AMC 12B (ProblemsAnswer KeyResources)
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Problem 24
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