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The Great Ellipse on the Surface of the Spheroid

  • Roy Williams


On any surface which fulfils the required continuity conditions, the shortest path between two points on the surface is along the are of a geodesic curve. On the surface of a sphere the geodesic curves are the great circles and the shortest path between any two points on this surface is along the arc of a great circle, but on the surface of an ellipsoid of revolution, the geodesic curves are not so easily defined except that the equator of this ellipsoid is a circle and its meridians are ellipses.



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1Phythian, J. E. and Williams, R. (1985). Cubic spline approximation to an integral function. Bulletin of the Institute of Mathematics & Its Applications, 21, 130131.
2Hairawa, T. (1987). On modification of sailing calculations. This Journal, 40, 138.


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The Great Ellipse on the Surface of the Spheroid

  • Roy Williams


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