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How Do You Find the Inverse Secant?

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Quick Answer

The inverse secant of a non-zero real number x is equal to the inverse cosine of the quantity 1/x. Most scientific and graphic calculators have the inverse cosine function built in to the calculator.

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Full Answer

The inverse secant can also be calculated from the inverse sine and inverse tangent functions. For a number x that is greater than 1, the inverse secant of x is equal to the inverse sine of the quantity square root of (x^2 - 1) divided by x. Alternatively, the inverse secant of x is equal to the inverse tangent of the quantity square root of (x^2 - 1), again provided that x is greater than 1.

When x is less than 1, the inverse secant of x is equal to pi (approximately 3.14159) plus the inverse sine of the quantity (x^2 - 1) divided by x. Another formula for the inverse secant of x less that 1 is pi minus the inverse tangent of the quantity (x^2 - 1). The inverse secant can also be calculated from the inverse cosecant and inverse cotangent functions. However, most calculators have the inverse sine and inverse tangent functions, while the inverse secant and inverse cotangent functions are generally found only in mathematical software.

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