The coordinate plane is the one concept of geometry that can often leave many biting their nails. At the same time, this can be one of the topics that can also leave educators in a plight as many do not seem to understand how to explain the concept to the young ones.
However, when a student is able to relate any concept to real-life examples, and practically correlate it with everyday life, it becomes a smooth ride for the teachers and the students. When talking about coordinate planes, the concept has many real-life uses. From being used by scientists in applied sciences, to engineers and architects, the possibilities to use the concept are indeed endless!
Hence, In this post, we will explore the use of coordinate systems in various fields and technologies, and discuss the importance of these systems in real-world applications.
Real-life applications of coordinate planes
1. Architectural Drawings
Architectural drawings are used to represent the layout and dimensions of a building or other structure. These drawings often use a coordinate system to represent different directions or locations within the structure. The x- and y-axes are used to indicate these positions. Technical drawings, such as floor plans, sections, and elevations, are commonly created using this system. This allows architects and builders to accurately and efficiently communicate the design of a structure.
2. Traffic Engineers
The coordinate system is also used by traffic engineers to represent the layout of a roadway or intersection. The x- and y-axes are used to indicate various directions or locations within the roadway. For example, the x-axis may represent the direction of travel on the roadway, while the y-axis may represent the distance from a reference point, such as the centerline of the roadways.
3. Satellite imagery
Gps maps use on our phones also have unique use of coordinates. Satellite imagery often employs a coordinate system to represent the location of features on the Earth’s surface. The x-axis, also known as longitude, and the y-axis, also known as latitude, are used to indicate these positions. The intersection of these two axes at the Prime Meridian and the Equator forms the origin of the coordinate system. This allows for a clear and precise representation of location on the Earth’s surface. Like many other navigation systems, GPS devices also use this coordinate system to determine your device’s location.
4. 3D Modeling
3D modeling software uses a coordinate system to represent the position and orientation of objects in 3D space. The x-, y-, and z-axes are used to indicate the different dimensions in the model. This allows engineers to create accurate and precise models of objects such as cars using CAD software. Similarly, the animation filters, you see on Snapchat are created through these coordinations.
5. Image Coordinates
Similarly to 3D modeling, In digital images, a grid of pixels is used, with the x-axis representing the horizontal position and the y-axis representing the vertical position. This coordinate system is used to represent the position of items on a screen or in a virtual world in computer graphics and design.
Astronomers use a coordinate system to represent the positions of celestial objects in the sky. The x- and y-axes can represent various directions or locations in space, and a system of celestial coordinates is used to describe the locations of stars, galaxies, and other objects in the universe. This allows for an accurate and efficient representation of astronomical observations and measurements.
Geologists use a coordinate system to represent the location of geological features and structures on the Earth’s surface. The x-axis represents one direction or location, while the y-axis represents another direction or location. Geologists use this system to describe the position of earthquakes, volcanoes, and other geological events. When areas are segregated through coordinates on live satellite movements, geologists use these signs to describe events.
8. Weather forecast
Weather forecasters also use a coordinate system to plot the location of weather systems and features on a map. The x-axis, also known as longitude, and the y-axis, also known as latitude, intersect at the Prime Meridian and the Equator. This system is used to show the position and severity of meteorological events, such as fronts, storms, and high and low-pressure systems.
In robotics, a coordinate system is used to help the robot navigate and perform tasks in its environment. The x-axis and y-axis represent different directions or positions in the robot’s environment. For example, the x-axis may represent the robot’s position from left to right and the y-axis may represent its position from front to back. By using a coordinate system, the robot can understand its own location and movement in relation to the objects and obstacles around it.
Coordinate plane: a crucial element of geometry?
Given that it is utilized to represent and examine geometric shapes and their relationships, the coordinate plane is an essential geometry component. The x-axis (horizontal) and the y-axis (vertical) of the coordinate plane intersect at a location known as the origin. Geometric shapes can be plotted and described using the grid of points created by the intersection of the x- and y-axes.
The coordinate plane is very helpful for studying geometric transformations like rotations, translations, and reflections. Equations can be used to express these transformations, and the final shape can be seen by plotting the equations on a coordinate plane.
In addition, questions involving geometric shapes and their properties can be solved using the coordinate plane to examine geometric ideas like distance, slope, and midpoint.
Just like Geometry has various real-life examples, the coordinate plane is a mathematical tool that can be used in a variety of real-world scenarios. The coordinate plane helps us view and comprehend complex information clearly and succinctly for a variety of tasks, like mapping out positions on a GPS system and plotting data on a graph. A coordinate plane is a crucial tool that can assist everyone who needs to navigate the environment, whether they are learners, researchers, or just ordinary people who need to make sense of their surroundings and come to better conclusions.
An engineer, Maths expert, Online Tutor and animal rights activist. In more than 5+ years of my online teaching experience, I closely worked with many students struggling with dyscalculia and dyslexia. With the years passing, I learned that not much effort being put into the awareness of this learning disorder. Students with dyscalculia often misunderstood for having just a simple math fear. This is still an underresearched and understudied subject. I am also the founder of Smartynote -‘The notepad app for dyslexia’,