Related Topics: More Geometry Lessons

In these lessons, we learn about

The following diagrams show the Radius Tangent Theorem and the Two-Tangent Theorem. Scroll down the page for more examples and solutions.

### Tangent to a Circle

A **tangent** to a circle is a straight line, in the plane of the circle, which touches the circle at only one point. The point is called the **point of tangency** or the **point of contact**.
**What is the tangent of a circle?**

A tangent is a line in the plane of a circle that intersects the circle at one point. The point where it intersects is called the point of tangency.

**How to prove the tangent to a circle theorem?**

The Tangent to a Circle Theorem states that a line is tangent to a circle if and only if the line is perpendicular to the radius drawn to the point of tangency.

### Secant

### Tangents from the same external point

**How to prove the Two-Tangent Theorem?**

The Two-Tangent Theorem states that when two segments are drawn tangent to a circle from the same point outside the circle, the segments are congruent. (uses Two-Column Proof and CPCTC).

**Theorem when two tangent lines emulate from the same external point**

How to find an unknown angle using the theorem?

**How to use the two-tangent theorem to solve a geometry problem?**

**How to apply the Congruent Tangents Theorem or Two-Tangent Theorem?**

### Common Internal and External Tangents

A common tangent is a line that is a tangent to each of two circles.

A common external tangent does not intersect the segment that joins the centers of the circles.

A common internal tangent intersects the segment that joins the centers of the circles. Common Internal and External Tangents

A lesson on finding the length of common internal and external tangents.

You can use the free Mathway calculator and problem solver below to practice Algebra or other math topics. Try the given examples, or type in your own problem and check your answer with the step-by-step explanations.

In these lessons, we learn about

- Tangent to a circle and the point of tangency
- Tangent to a Circle Theorem
- Secant
- Two-Tangent Theorem
- Common internal and external tangents

The following diagrams show the Radius Tangent Theorem and the Two-Tangent Theorem. Scroll down the page for more examples and solutions.

**Tangent to a Circle Theorem: **A tangent to a circle is perpendicular to the radius drawn to the point of tangency.

A tangent is a line in the plane of a circle that intersects the circle at one point. The point where it intersects is called the point of tangency.

The Tangent to a Circle Theorem states that a line is tangent to a circle if and only if the line is perpendicular to the radius drawn to the point of tangency.

A straight line that cuts the circle at two distinct points is called a **secant**.

* Example*

In the following diagram

a) state all the tangents to the circle and the point of tangency of each tangent.

b) state all the secants.

* Solution*

* AB * is a tangent to the circle and the point of tangency is *G*.

*CD * is a secant to the circle because it has two points of contact.

*EF* is a tangent to the circle and the point of tangency is *H*.

**Two-Tangent Theorem:** When two segments are drawn tangent to a circle from the same point outside the circle, the segments are equal in length.

In the following diagram:

If *AB* and *AC* are two tangents to a circle centred at *O*, then:

- the tangents to the circle from the external point
*A*are equal *OA*bisects the angle*BAC*between the two tangents*OA*bisects the angle*BOC*between the two radii to the points of contact- triangle
*AOB*and triangle*AOC*are congruent right triangles.

The two-tangent theorem is also called the "hat" or "ice-cream cone" theorem because it looks like a hat on the circle or an ice-cream cone.

The Two-Tangent Theorem states that when two segments are drawn tangent to a circle from the same point outside the circle, the segments are congruent. (uses Two-Column Proof and CPCTC).

How to find an unknown angle using the theorem?

A common external tangent does not intersect the segment that joins the centers of the circles.

A common internal tangent intersects the segment that joins the centers of the circles. Common Internal and External Tangents

A lesson on finding the length of common internal and external tangents.

Rotate to landscape screen format on a mobile phone or small tablet to use the **Mathway** widget, a free math problem solver that **answers your questions with step-by-step explanations**.

You can use the free Mathway calculator and problem solver below to practice Algebra or other math topics. Try the given examples, or type in your own problem and check your answer with the step-by-step explanations.

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