March 16, 2023

Equation, Properties, Examples | Parabola Formula

The parabola is an attractive and multifaceted geometric shape which managed to captured the attention of mathematicians and scientists for ages. Its unusual properties and plain yet elegant equation makes it a strong equipment for modeling a broad assortment of real-life phenomena. From the path of a projectile to the shape of a satellite dish, the parabola plays a crucial role in various fields, including architecture, engineering, physics, and mathematics.

A parabola is a type of conic section, that is a curve made by intersecting a cone over a plane. The parabola is defined with a quadratic equation, and its properties, such as the vertex, focus, directrix, and symmetry, offer important understanding into its performance and functions. By grasping the parabola formula and its properties, we could gain a deeper admiration for this rudimental geometric shape and its various usages.

In this blog article, we will study the parabola in detail, from its properties and equation to examples of in what way it can be applied in many fields. Whether you're a learner, a professional, or simply curious about the parabola, this blog will provide a comprehensive summary of this interesting and essential concept.

Parabola Equation

The parabola is stated with a quadratic equation of the form:

y = ax^2 + bx + c

here a, b, and c are constants which decide the size, shape, and position of the parabola. The value of a controls whether the parabola opens upward or downward. If a is more than 0, the parabola opens upward, and if a less than 0, the parabola opens downward. The vertex of the parabola is located at the point (-b/2a, c - b^2/4a).

Properties of the Parabola

Here are the properties of Parabola:


The vertex of the parabola is the point where the curve switches direction. It is additionally the point where the axis of symmetry intercepts the parabola. The axis of symmetry is a line that moves through the vertex and splits the parabola into two symmetrical halves.


The focus of the parabola is the point] on the axis of symmetry that is equidistant from the directrix and vertex. The directrix is a line that is perpendicular to the axis of symmetry and located at a length of 1/4a units from the vertex.


The directrix is a line which is perpendicular to the axis of symmetry and located at a length of 1/4a units from the vertex. Every points on the parabola are equidistant from the focus and the directrix.


The parabola is symmetric with regard to its axis of symmetry. This means that if we consider any location on one side of the axis of symmetry throughout the axis, we get a corresponding point on the other side of the axis.


The parabola crosses the x-axis at two points, provided by the formula:

x = (-b ± sqrt(b^2 - 4ac)) / 2a

The parabola intersects the y-axis at the coordinated (0, c).

Examples of Parabolas

Here are few basic examples of Parabolas:

Example 1: Graphing a Parabola

Let's graph the parabola y = x^2 - 4x + 3. Primarily, we are required to find the vertex, axis of symmetry, and intercepts. We can utilize the formula:

vertex = (-b/2a, c - b^2/4a)

to figure out the vertex. Placing in the values a = 1, b = -4, and c = 3, we get:

vertex = (2, -1)

So the vertex is located at the location (2, -1). The axis of symmetry is the line x = 2.

Subsequently, we can work out the x-intercepts by setting y = 0 and solving for x. We get:

x^2 - 4x + 3 = 0

(x - 3)(x - 1) = 0

Accordingly the parabola intersects the x-axis at x = 1 and x = 3.

Ultimately, the y-intercept is the coordinates (0, c) = (0, 3).

Utilizing this information, we could sketch the graph of the parabola through plotting the vertex, the x-intercepts, and the y-intercept, and portraying the curve of the parabola between them.

Example 2: Using a Parabola in Physics

The parabolic curve of a projectile's trajectory is a standard applications of the parabola in physics. When an object is launched or thrown upward, it follows a course which is portrayed with a parabolic equation. The equation for the course of a projectile launched from the ground at an angle θ with an initial velocity v is represented by:

y = xtan(θ) - (gx^2) / (2v^2cos^2(θ))

where g is the acceleration due to gravity, and x and y are the horizontal and vertical length covered by the object, respectively.

The trajectory of the object is a parabolic curve, with the vertex at the point (0, 0) and the axis of symmetry corresponding to the ground. The focal point of the parabola represents the landing point of the object, and the directrix represents the height above the ground where the object would strike if it weren’t affected by gravity.


In conclusion, the parabola formula and its characteristics play an important function in several fields of study, consisting of mathematics, architecture, physics, and engineering. By knowing the equation of a parabola, its characteristics for example the directrix, vertex, and focus, and symmetry, and its various utilizations, we can obtain a deeper comprehension of how parabolas work and how they could be utilized to model real-world phenomena.

Whether you're a student finding it challenging to comprehend the theories of the parabola or a professional looking to utilize parabolic equations to real-world challenges, it's important to have a firm foundation in this elementary topic.

This's where Grade Potential Tutoring comes in. Our expert teachers are available online or face-to-face to offer customized and productive tutoring services to help you conquer the parabola and other mathematical theories. Connect with us today to schedule a tutoring session and take your math skills to the next stage.