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Comparing fractions using cross-multiplication
Unlike fractions can be compared using cross-multiplication.
Compare 3⁄7 and 5⁄8 using cross-multiplication.
To compare two fractions with different denominators, we make their denominators the same.
We do it by changing the denominators to the product of both the denominators.
So, the denominator of both the fractions becomes 7 × 8 = 56
Now, we use cross-multiplication, to find the numerators. First, we multiply the numerator of the first fraction with the denominator of the second fraction.
3 × 8 = 24
So, the first fraction becomes: 24⁄56
Next, we multiply the numerator of the second fraction by the denominator of the first fraction.
5 × 7 = 35
So, the second fraction becomes: 35⁄56
Since 24⁄56 < 35⁄56
Example: Which is bigger, 2⁄5 or 3⁄4 ?
Using cross-multiplication we find,
2 × 4 = 8 and 3 × 5 = 15
As, 8 < 15
Solving equations involving ratios using cross-multiplication
We can use cross-multiplication to solve an equation with 2 ratios and find the value of the variable.
If we have a⁄b = c⁄d , then
where b and d are not equal to zero, then we cross multiply as
Example: If 8 candle holders cost $40. How much will 12 such candle stands cost?
Cost of 8 candle holders = $40
Cost of 1 candle holder = 40⁄8................................................(i)
Let the cost of 12 candle holders be x
Therefore, the cost of 1 candle holder will be x⁄12....................(ii)
Equating (i) and (ii) we get
40⁄8 = x⁄12
40 × 12 = 8 × x
480⁄8 = x
60 = x