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Conic Section

Concept

Conic Section

A conic section is a curve that follows the intersection between a plane and a cone.

intersection between a cone and a plane

When a plane intersects with a cone, the intersection between the surfaces can take three different shapes — namely, a parabola, an ellipse, and a hyperbola.

intersection between a cone an a plane to form a parabola, an ellipse, and a hyperbola

Notice that the circle is a special case of the ellipse. However, sometimes it is referred to as a fourth type of conic.