What is the slope of the line perpendicular to 3x+y=15?

1 Answer
Mar 8, 2018

The perpendicular line's slope is #1/3#.


Step 1: Convert the given line to slope-intercept form.



The slope of the given line is #–3#.

Step 2: Take the negative reciprocal of this slope.

#m=–3 " "=>" "m_"new"=–1/(–3)=1/3#

The slope of a line is a ratio of how far "up" the line goes relative to how far "right" it goes. If a line goes up by 3 every time it goes right 2, then the slope is #3/2.# This is commonly called "rise over run".

A perpendicular line is achieved by rotating the original line by 90°. Hence, the old rise of 3 becomes a new run of -3, and the old run of 2 becomes a new rise of 2. Meaning, the new slope will be #"new rise"/"new run" = 2/(–3)" "(=–2/3),# which is the negative reciprocal of the old slope.