In mathematics, the sine is a trigonometric function of an angle. The sine of an acute angle is defined in the context of a right triangle: for the specified angle, it is the ratio of the length of the side that is opposite that angle to the length of the longest side of the triangle (the hypotenuse).
More generally, the definition of sine (and other trigonometric functions) can be extended to any real value in terms of the length of a certain line segment in a unit circle. More modern definitions express the sine as an infinite series or as the solution of certain differential equations, allowing their extension to arbitrary positive and negative values and even to complex numbers.
The sine function is commonly used to model periodic phenomena such as sound and light waves, the position and velocity of harmonic oscillators, sunlight intensity and day length, and average temperature variations throughout the year.
The function sine can be traced to the jyā and koṭijyā functions used in Gupta period Indian astronomy (Aryabhatiya, Surya Siddhanta), via translation from Sanskrit to Arabic and then from Arabic to Latin.^{[1]} The word "sine" comes from a Latin mistranslation of the Arabic jiba, which is a transliteration of the Sanskrit word for half the chord, jyaardha.^{[2]}
To define the sine function of an acute angle α, start with a right triangle that contains an angle of measure α; in the accompanying figure, angle A in triangle ABC is the angle of interest. The three sides of the triangle are named as follows:
Once such a triangle is chosen, the sine of the angle is equal to the length of the opposite side divided by the length of the hypotenuse, or:
The other trigonometric functions of the angle can be defined similarly; for example, the cosine of the angle is the ratio between the adjacent side and the hypotenuse, while the tangent gives the ratio between the opposite and adjacent sides.
As stated, the value sin(α) appears to depend on the choice of right triangle containing an angle of measure α. However, this is not the case: all such triangles are similar, and so the ratio is the same for each of them.
In trigonometry, a unit circle is the circle of radius one centered at the origin (0, 0) in the Cartesian coordinate system.
Let a line through the origin, making an angle of θ with the positive half of the xaxis, intersect the unit circle. The x and ycoordinates of this point of intersection are equal to cos(θ) and sin(θ), respectively. The point's distance from the origin is always 1.
Unlike the definitions with the right triangle or slope, the angle can be extended to the full set of real arguments by using the unit circle. This can also be achieved by requiring certain symmetries and that sine be a periodic function.
Exact identities (using radians):
These apply for all values of .
The reciprocal of sine is cosecant, i.e., the reciprocal of sin(A) is csc(A), or cosec(A). Cosecant gives the ratio of the length of the hypotenuse to the length of the opposite side:
The inverse function of sine is arcsine (arcsin or asin) or inverse sine (sin^{1}). As sine is noninjective, it is not an exact inverse function but a partial inverse function. For example, sin(0) = 0, but also sin(π) = 0, sin(2π) = 0 etc. It follows that the arcsine function is multivalued: arcsin(0) = 0, but also arcsin(0) = π, arcsin(0) = 2π, etc. When only one value is desired, the function may be restricted to its principal branch. With this restriction, for each x in the domain the expression arcsin(x) will evaluate only to a single value, called its principal value.
k is some integer:
Or in one equation:
Arcsin satisfies:
and
For the sine function:
The derivative is:
The antiderivative is:
C denotes the constant of integration.
It is possible to express any trigonometric function in terms of any other (up to a plus or minus sign, or using the sign function).
Sine in terms of the other common trigonometric functions:
f θ  Using plus/minus (±)  Using sign function (sgn)  

f θ =  ± per Quadrant  f θ =  
I  II  III  IV  
cos  +  +  −  −  
+  −  −  +  
cot  +  +  −  −  
+  −  −  +  
tan  +  −  −  +  
+  −  −  +  
sec  +  −  +  −  
+  −  −  + 
Note that for all equations which use plus/minus (±), the result is positive for angles in the first quadrant.
The basic relationship between the sine and the cosine can also be expressed as the Pythagorean trigonometric identity:
where sin^{2}x means (sin(x))^{2}.
Over the four quadrants of the sine function is as follows.
Quadrant  Degrees  Radians  Value  Sign  Monotony  Convexity 

1st Quadrant  increasing  concave  
2nd Quadrant  decreasing  concave  
3rd Quadrant  decreasing  convex  
4th Quadrant  increasing  convex 
Points between the quadrants. k is an integer.
Degrees  Radians

Radians  Point type  

Root, Inflection  
Maximum  
Root, Inflection  
Minimum 
For arguments outside those in the table, get the value using the fact the sine function has a period of 360° (or 2π rad): , or use . Or use and . For complement of sine, we have .
Using only geometry and properties of limits, it can be shown that the derivative of sine is cosine, and that the derivative of cosine is the negative of sine.
Using the reflection from the calculated geometric derivation of the sine is with the 4n + kth derivative at the point 0:
This gives the following Taylor series expansion at x = 0. One can then use the theory of Taylor series to show that the following identities hold for all real numbers x (where x is the angle in radians) :^{[3]}
If x were expressed in degrees then the series would contain messy factors involving powers of π/180: if x is the number of degrees, the number of radians is y = πx /180, so
The series formulas for the sine and cosine are uniquely determined, up to the choice of unit for angles, by the requirements that
The radian is the unit that leads to the expansion with leading coefficient 1 for the sine and is determined by the additional requirement that
The coefficients for both the sine and cosine series may therefore be derived by substituting their expansions into the pythagorean and double angle identities, taking the leading coefficient for the sine to be 1, and matching the remaining coefficients.
In general, mathematically important relationships between the sine and cosine functions and the exponential function (see, for example, Euler's formula) are substantially simplified when angles are expressed in radians, rather than in degrees, grads or other units. Therefore, in most branches of mathematics beyond practical geometry, angles are generally assumed to be expressed in radians.
A similar series is Gregory's series for arctan, which is obtained by omitting the factorials in the denominator.
The sine function can also be represented as a generalized continued fraction:
The continued fraction representation expresses the real number values, both rational and irrational, of the sine function.
Zero is the only real fixed point of the sine function; in other words the only intersection of the sine function and the identity function is sin(0) = 0.
The arc length of the sine curve between and is This integral is an elliptic integral of the second kind.
The arc length for a full period is where is the Gamma function.
The arc length of the sine curve from 0 to x is the above number divided by times x, plus a correction that varies periodically in x with period . The Fourier series for this correction can be written in closed form using special functions, but it is perhaps more instructive to write the decimal approximations of the Fourier coefficients. The sine curve arc length from 0 to x is
The law of sines states that for an arbitrary triangle with sides a, b, and c and angles opposite those sides A, B and C:
This is equivalent to the equality of the first three expressions below:
where R is the triangle's circumradius.
It can be proven by dividing the triangle into two right ones and using the above definition of sine. The law of sines is useful for computing the lengths of the unknown sides in a triangle if two angles and one side are known. This is a common situation occurring in triangulation, a technique to determine unknown distances by measuring two angles and an accessible enclosed distance.
For certain integral numbers x of degrees, the value of sin(x) is particularly simple. A table of some of these values is given below.
x (angle)  sin x  

Degrees  Radians  Gradians  Turns  Exact  Decimal 
0°  0  0^{g}  0  0  0 
180°  π  200^{g}  1/2  
15°  1/12π  16 2/3^{g}  1/24  0.258819045102521  
165°  11/12π  183 1/3^{g}  11/24  
30°  1/6π  33 1/3^{g}  1/12  1/2  0.5 
150°  5/6π  166 2/3^{g}  5/12  
45°  1/4π  50^{g}  1/8  0.707106781186548  
135°  3/4π  150^{g}  3/8  
60°  1/3π  66 2/3^{g}  1/6  0.866025403784439  
120°  2/3π  133 1/3^{g}  1/3  
75°  5/12π  83 1/3^{g}  5/24  0.965925826289068  
105°  7/12π  116 2/3^{g}  7/24  
90°  1/2π  100^{g}  1/4  1  1 
90 degree increments:
x in degrees  0°  90°  180°  270°  360° 
x in radians  0  π/2  π  3π/2  2π 
x in gons  0  100^{g}  200^{g}  300^{g}  400^{g} 
x in turns  0  1/4  1/2  3/4  1 
sin x  0  1  0  1  0 
Other values not listed above:
Sine is used to determine the imaginary part of a complex number given in polar coordinates (r,φ):
the imaginary part is:
r and φ represent the magnitude and angle of the complex number respectively. i is the imaginary unit. z is a complex number.
Although dealing with complex numbers, sine's parameter in this usage is still a real number. Sine can also take a complex number as an argument.
The definition of the sine function for complex arguments z:
where i^{ 2} = −1, and sinh is hyperbolic sine. This is an entire function. Also, for purely real x,
For purely imaginary numbers:
It is also sometimes useful to express the complex sine function in terms of the real and imaginary parts of its argument:
Using the partial fraction expansion technique in complex analysis, one can find that the infinite series
both converge and are equal to . Similarly, one can show that
Using product expansion technique, one can derive
sin z is found in the functional equation for the Gamma function,
which in turn is found in the functional equation for the Riemann zetafunction,
As a holomorphic function, sin z is a 2D solution of Laplace's equation:
It is also related with level curves of pendulum.^{[4]}
real component  imaginary component  magnitude 
real component  imaginary component  magnitude 
While the early study of trigonometry can be traced to antiquity, the trigonometric functions as they are in use today were developed in the medieval period. The chord function was discovered by Hipparchus of Nicaea (180–125 BCE) and Ptolemy of Roman Egypt (90–165 CE).
The function sine (and cosine) can be traced to the jyā and koṭijyā functions used in Gupta period (320 to 550 CE) Indian astronomy (Aryabhatiya, Surya Siddhanta), via translation from Sanskrit to Arabic and then from Arabic to Latin.^{[1]}
The first published use of the abbreviations 'sin', 'cos', and 'tan' is by the 16th century French mathematician Albert Girard; these were further promulgated by Euler (see below). The Opus palatinum de triangulis of Georg Joachim Rheticus, a student of Copernicus, was probably the first in Europe to define trigonometric functions directly in terms of right triangles instead of circles, with tables for all six trigonometric functions; this work was finished by Rheticus' student Valentin Otho in 1596.
In a paper published in 1682, Leibniz proved that sin x is not an algebraic function of x.^{[5]} Roger Cotes computed the derivative of sine in his Harmonia Mensurarum (1722).^{[6]} Leonhard Euler's Introductio in analysin infinitorum (1748) was mostly responsible for establishing the analytic treatment of trigonometric functions in Europe, also defining them as infinite series and presenting "Euler's formula", as well as the nearmodern abbreviations sin., cos., tang., cot., sec., and cosec.^{[7]}
Look up sine in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. 
Etymologically, the word sine derives from the Sanskrit word for chord, jiva*(jya being its more popular synonym). This was transliterated in Arabic as jiba جــيــب, abbreviated jb جــــب . Since Arabic is written without short vowels, "jb" was interpreted as the word jaib جــيــب, which means "bosom", when the Arabic text was translated in the 12th century into Latin by Gerard of Cremona. Gerard used the Latin equivalent for "bosom", sinus (which means "bosom" or "bay" or "fold").^{[8]}^{[9]} The English form sine was introduced in the 1590s.
The sine function, along with other trigonometric functions, is widely available across programming languages and platforms. In computing, it is typically abbreviated to sin
.
Some CPU architectures have a builtin instruction for sine, including the Intel x87 FPUs since the 80387.
In programming languages, sin
is typically either a builtin function or found within the language's standard math library.
For example, the C standard library defines sine functions within math.h: sin(double)
, sinf(float)
, and sinl(long double)
. The parameter of each is a floating point value, specifying the angle in radians. Each function returns the same data type as it accepts. Many other trigonometric functions are also defined in math.h, such as for cosine, arc sine, and hyperbolic sine (sinh).
Similarly, Python defines math.sin(x)
within the builtin math
module. Complex sine functions are also available within the cmath
module, e.g. cmath.sin(z)
. CPython's math functions call the C math
library, and use a doubleprecision floatingpoint format.
There is no standard algorithm for calculating sine. IEEE 7542008, the most widely used standard for floatingpoint computation, does not address calculating trigonometric functions such as sine.^{[10]} Algorithms for calculating sine may be balanced for such constraints as speed, accuracy, portability, or range of input values accepted. This can lead to different results for different algorithms, especially for special circumstances such as very large inputs, e.g. sin(10^{22})
.
A once common programming optimization, used especially in 3D graphics, was to precalculate a table of sine values, for example one value per degree. This allowed results to be looked up from a table rather than being calculated in real time. With modern CPU architectures this method may offer no advantage.^{[citation needed]}
The CORDIC algorithm is commonly used in scientific calculators.