The triangles being similar,

the altitudes drawn from vertex in both the cases will bear a ratio to the sides whose lengths are given

From the figure,

The unknown altitude y of triangle DEF will bear same ratio to the side 18 as in the triangle ABC( y+8)will bear to the side with length 27

if we write the algebraic equation for the above statement

y/18=(y+8)/27 or by rearranging (y+8)/y=27/18=3/2

solving further 2(y+8)=3y or 2y +16 =3y or 16=3y-2y=y

So y is 16

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