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Dilation

A transformation in which a figure grows larger. Dilations may be with respect to a point (dilation of a geometric figure) or with respect to the axis of a graph (dilation of a graph).

Note: Some high school textbooks erroneously use the word dilation to refer to all transformations in which the figure changes size, whether the figure becomes larger or smaller. Unfortunately the English language has no word that refers collectively to both stretching and shrinking.

Pronunciation: Dilation (die-LAY-shun) has only three syllables, not four.

 

See also

Compression, compression of a geometric figure, compression of a graph

 


  this page updated 28-jul-14
Mathwords: Terms and Formulas from Algebra I to Calculus
written, illustrated, and webmastered by Bruce Simmons
NCTM Web Bytes December 2004 Web Bytes March 2005 Web Bytes