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A new bakery offers decorated sheet cakes for children’s birthday parties and other special occasions. The bakery wants the volume of a small cake to be 351 cubic inches. The cake is in the shape of a rectangular solid. They want the length of the cake to be four inches longer than the width of the cake and the height of the cake to be one-third of the width. What should the dimensions of the cake pan be?
This problem can be solved by writing a cubic function and solving a cubic equation for the volume of the cake. In this section, we will discuss a variety of tools for writing polynomial functions and solving polynomial equations.
Evaluating a Polynomial Using the Remainder Theorem
In the last section, we learned how to divide polynomials. We can now use polynomial division to evaluate polynomials using the Remainder Theorem. If the polynomial is divided by
We can check our answer by evaluating
We can factor the quadratic factor to write the polynomial as
By the Factor Theorem, the zeros of
When the leading coefficient is 1, the possible rational zeros are the factors of the constant term.
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Given a polynomial function