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I've calculated the slope values of a DEM and created a raster with values from 0 to 51,3 (degree). I wanted to calculate the Cos of these pixel values with the Raster calculator (to calculate in the next step the total area) expecting only positive values (cos(0...90) should be positive) but around 50 percent of the values turned out negative and I can't figure out why.

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Because the coseno function need the data in radians, you can use this:

 cos(radians("variable"))

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