AskDefine | Define hyperbolic

Dictionary Definition

hyperbolic adj
1 enlarged beyond truth or reasonableness; "had an exaggerated (or inflated) opinion of himself"; "a hyperbolic style" [syn: exaggerated, inflated]
2 of or relating to a hyperbola; "hyperbolic functions"

User Contributed Dictionary



  1. of, or relating to hyperbole; exaggerated
  2. mathematics notcomparable of or pertaining to a hyperbola, or to the hyperbolic function
pertaining to a hyperbola
pertaining to a mathematical hyperbola
  • Czech: hyperbolický
  • French: hyperbolique
  • German: hyperbolisch
  • Polish: hiperboliczny
  • Spanish: hiperbólico

Extensive Definition

distinguish hyperbole
In mathematics, a hyperbola (Greek , "over-thrown") is a type of conic section defined as the intersection between a right circular conical surface and a plane which cuts through both halves of the cone.
It may also be defined as the locus of points where the difference in the distance to two fixed points (called the foci) is constant. That fixed difference in distance is two times a where a is the distance from the center of the hyperbola to the vertex of the nearest branch of the hyperbola. a is also known as the semi-major axis of the hyperbola. The foci lie on the transverse axis and their midpoint is called the center.
For a simple geometric proof that the two characterizations above are equivalent to each other, see Dandelin spheres.
Algebraically, a hyperbola is a curve in the Cartesian plane defined by an equation of the form
A x^2 + B xy + C y^2 + D x + E y + F = 0
such that B^2 > 4 AC, where all of the coefficients are real, and where more than one solution, defining a pair of points (x, y) on the hyperbola, exists.
The graph of two variables varying inversely on the Cartesian coordinate plane is a hyperbola.


The first two were listed above:
  • The intersection between a right circular conical surface and a plane which cuts through both halves of the cone.
  • The locus of points where the difference in the distance to two fixed points (called the foci) is constant.
  • The locus of points for which the ratio of the distances to one focus and to a line (called the directrix) is a constant larger than 1. This constant is the eccentricity of the hyperbola.
A hyperbola comprises two disconnected curves called its arms or branches which separate the foci. At large distances from the foci the hyperbola begins to approximate two lines, known as asymptotes. The asymptotes cross at the center of the hyperbola and have slope \pm \frac for an East-West opening hyperbola or \pm \frac for a North-South opening hyperbola.
A hyperbola has the property that a ray originating at one of the foci is reflected in such a way as to appear to have originated at the other focus. Also, if rays are directed towards one of the foci from the exterior of the hyperbola, they will be reflected towards the other focus.
The simplest example of these are the hyperbolas


East-west opening hyperbola:
r^2 =a\sec 2\theta \,
North-south opening hyperbola:
r^2 =-a\sec 2\theta \,
Northeast-southwest opening hyperbola:
r^2 =a\csc 2\theta \,
Northwest-southeast opening hyperbola:
r^2 =-a\csc 2\theta \,
In all formulas the center is at the pole, and a is the semi-major axis and semi-minor axis.


East-west opening hyperbola:
x = a\sec t + h \\ y = b\tan t + k \\ \end \qquad \mathrm \qquad\begin x = \pm a\cosh t + h \\ y = b\sinh t + k \\ \end
North-south opening hyperbola:
x = a\tan t + h \\ y = b\sec t + k \\ \end \qquad \mathrm \qquad\begin x = a\sinh t + h \\ y = \pm b\cosh t + k \\ \end
In all formulae (h,k) are the center coordinates of the hyperbola, a is the length of the semi-major axis, and b is the length of the semi-minor axis.

See also

hyperbolic in Afrikaans: Hiperbool
hyperbolic in Arabic: قطع زائد
hyperbolic in Bulgarian: Хипербола
hyperbolic in Catalan: Hipèrbola
hyperbolic in Czech: Hyperbola
hyperbolic in Danish: Hyperbel
hyperbolic in German: Hyperbel (Mathematik)
hyperbolic in Estonian: Hüperbool
hyperbolic in Modern Greek (1453-): Υπερβολή (γεωμετρία)
hyperbolic in Spanish: Hipérbola
hyperbolic in Esperanto: Hiperbolo
hyperbolic in Persian: هذلولی
hyperbolic in French: Hyperbole (mathématiques)
hyperbolic in Korean: 쌍곡선
hyperbolic in Hindi: अति परवलय
hyperbolic in Indonesian: Hiperbola (matematika)
hyperbolic in Italian: Iperbole (geometria)
hyperbolic in Hebrew: היפרבולה
hyperbolic in Georgian: ჰიპერბოლა
hyperbolic in Lithuanian: Hiperbolė
hyperbolic in Hungarian: Hiperbola
hyperbolic in Dutch: Hyperbool (wiskunde)
hyperbolic in Japanese: 双曲線
hyperbolic in Norwegian: Hyperbel
hyperbolic in Polish: Hiperbola (matematyka)
hyperbolic in Portuguese: Hipérbole
hyperbolic in Romanian: Hiperbolă
hyperbolic in Russian: Гипербола (математика)
hyperbolic in Slovak: Hyperbola
hyperbolic in Slovenian: Hiperbola
hyperbolic in Serbian: Хипербола
hyperbolic in Finnish: Hyperbeli
hyperbolic in Swedish: Hyperbel
hyperbolic in Tamil: அதிபரவளைவு
hyperbolic in Vietnamese: Hyperbol
hyperbolic in Chinese: 双曲线
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