Lateral Surface of a Cylinder Calculator

Created by Wei Bin Loo
Reviewed by Julia Żuławińska
Last updated: May 20, 2022

With this lateral surface of a cylinder calculator, we aim to help you to calculate the lateral surface area of a cylinder.

We have written this article to help you understand what is the lateral surface area of a cylinder and how to find the lateral surface area of a cylinder. We will also demonstrate some calculations examples to help you understand the calculation.

What is the lateral surface area of a cylinder?

To understand what is the lateral surface area of a circular cylinder, we need to first define two things: cylinder and lateral surface area.

A cylinder is an 3D object that is bound by a cylindrical surface and 2 circles, both on top and bottom. The lateral surface area is the surface area of a 3D object, excluding the area of its top and base.

Hence, the lateral surface area of a circular cylinder is the area of the cylindrical area. The calculation excludes the the top and base circles' area.

How to find the lateral surface area of a cylinder?

To understand how do you find the lateral surface area of a cylinder, let's take a cylinder with the following attributes as an example:

  • Object: Cylinder
  • Diameter, d: 10 cm
  • Height, h: 12 cm

You can find the lateral surface area of a cylinder in four steps:

  1. Determine the radius of the cylinder

The radius, r, is the distance from the center of the circle to its edge. It can also be interpreted as half go the diameter, as displayed in the in the formula below:

r = d / 2

In this example, the r is 10 cm / 2 = 5 cm.

  1. Determine the height of the cylinder

The height of the cylinder, h, is 12 cm in our example.

  1. Calculate the perimeter of the base circle

You can calculate the perimeter of the base circle suing the formula below:

perimeter = 2 * π * r

Hence, the perimeter of the base circle is 2 * π * 5 cm = 10π cm.

  1. Apply the lateral surface formula for the cylinder: lateral surface = perimeter * height

The last step is to find the lateral surface area of the cylinder using the formula below:

lateral surface = perimeter * h

Thus, the lateral surface of the cylinder is 10π cm * 12 cm = 120π cm² ≈ 377 cm².

Now that you understand what is the lateral surface area of a cylinder and the calculation of the lateral surface of a cylinder, we want to help you in understanding more about the topic. Hence, here are some calculators that are related to calculation involving the cylinder:

FAQ

What is lateral surface?

The lateral surface is the total area of all the surface area of an object, excluding its top and base.

What is a cylinder?

A cylinder is a 3D object that is bound by a cylindrical surface with 2 circles on its top and base. You can imagine it as a tin an with a top and base lids.

How do I calculate the lateral surface of a cylinder?

You can calculate the lateral surface of a cylinder in four steps:

  1. Determine the radius of the cylinder
  2. Determine the height of the cylinder
  3. Calculate the perimeter of the base circle: perimeter = 2 * π * radius
  4. Apply the lateral surface formula for the cylinder: lateral surface = perimeter * height

Can the lateral surface be negative?

No, the lateral surface cannot be negative. This is because all 3D object will have a surface. An object with negative lateral surface does not exist.

Wei Bin Loo
Height
in
Radius
in
Diameter
in
Cylinder lateral surface
cm²
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