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Subsections

# Cylindrical and Spherical Coordinates

## Getting Started

To assist you, there is a worksheet associated with this lab that contains examples and even solutions to some of the exercises. You can copy that worksheet to your home directory with the following command, which must be run in a terminal window for example, not in Maple.

cp /math/calclab/MA1024/Coords_start.mws ~/My_Documents


You can copy the worksheet now, but you should read through the lab before you load it into Maple. Once you have read to the exercises, start up Maple, load the worksheet Coords_start.mws, and go through it carefully. Then you can start working on the exercises.

## Background

Defining surfaces with rectangular coordinates often times becomes more complicated than necessary. A change in coordinates can simplify things. Cylindrical coordinates can simplify plotting a region in space that is symmetric with respect to the -axis such as paraboloids and cylinders. The paraboloid would become and the cylinder would become . Spherical coordinates would simplify the equation of a sphere, such as , to . The conversion tables below show how to make the change of coordinates.

To change to cylindrical coordinates from rectangular coordinates use the conversion:

Where is the radius in the x-y plane and is the angle in the x-y plane.

To change to spherical coordinates from rectangular coordinates use the conversion:

Where is the angle in the x-y plane; is the radius from the origin in any direction; and is the angle in the x-z plane.

## Exercises

1. Given the rectangular equation for a circular paraboloid:

A)
Graph the equation using the domain values of , and the range values .
B)
Write the equation in cylindrical coordinates and then graph the equation.
C)
Write the equation in spherical coordinates and graph it.
D)
Looking at the three equations, which coordinates appears to give the simplest equation?
2. Given the equation:

A)
Graph the equation using the domain values , and the range values .
B)
Write the equation in cylindrical coordinates and graph it.
C)
Write the equation in spherical coordinates. Then graph your equation.
D)
Looking at the three equations, which coordinat es appear to give the simplest equation?
3. A problem from your text Calculus, Early Transcendentals Version by Edwards and Penny 6th edition p 997 used to describe a bumpy sphere, waves on the surface of a small planet covered by a deep ocean, or a model of a tumor. Use Maple to plot the spherical-coordinate surface

with values of the positive number and and the positive integers and given below. How does the surface depend on the value of each of these four parameters?
A)
, , ,
B)
, , ,
C)
, , ,
D)
, , ,
E)
, , ,
F)
, , ,

Next: About this document ... Up: lab_template Previous: lab_template
Dina Solitro
2007-02-19