- The chord of the
**parabola**that is parallel to the directrix and passes through the focus is known as the latus rectum. Parabolas can open in any direction: up, down, left, right, or any other. Here, \\ (a > 0\\), the**parabola**is opened up on the right side. If \\ (a < 0\\), the**parabola**will be opened up on the left side.

- For example, a parabolic reflector helps in focusing light into a beam that can be seen from a long distance. It aids in the reduction of light utilisation, and so improves the surface of the
**parabola**. Q.1. What will be the coordinates of focus and vertex for the**parabola**\\ ( {y^2} = 12x\\) ?

- The
**parabola**is U-shaped (opening to the top). The horizontal chord through the focus (see picture in opening section) is called the latus rectum; one half of it is the semi-latus rectum. The latus rectum is parallel to the directrix. The semi-latus rectum is designated by the letter p {displaystyle p} .

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