Tangent Function

Tangent Function

Summary

The tangent function returns the tangent ratio of the input angle. In geometric terms, the function returns the length of the line tangent to the point on the unit circle.

Syntax

tan(θ)

Arguments

Name Description
θ (theta) The angle provided in radians.

Usage

Tangent takes in the angle of a right triangle as input and returns the ratio of the triangle’s opposite side over its adjacent side. The angle is represented by the symbol theta (θ).

Right Triangle

Illustrated below is every possible triangle with hypotenuse of length one (the unit circle). Notice the extremes, where the opposite and adjacent sides are either zero or one. When the numerator (opposite side) becomes really small the graph approaches zero. Where the denominator (adjacent side) becomes really small the graph diverges towards positive and negative infinity.