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ERIC Number: EJ810476
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Oct
Pages: 10
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 10
ISSN: ISSN-0020-739X
The Classical Version of Stokes' Theorem Revisited
Markvorsen, Steen
International Journal of Mathematical Education in Science and Technology, v39 n7 p879-888 Oct 2008
Using only fairly simple and elementary considerations--essentially from first year undergraduate mathematics--we show how the classical Stokes' theorem for any given surface and vector field in R[superscript 3] follows from an application of Gauss' divergence theorem to a suitable modification of the vector field in a tubular shell around the given surface. The two stated classical theorems are (like the fundamental theorem of calculus) nothing but shadows of the general version of Stokes' theorem for differential forms on manifolds. However, the main point in the present article is first, that this latter fact usually does not get within reach for students in first year calculus courses and second, that calculus textbooks in general only just hint at the correspondence alluded to above. Our proof that Stokes' theorem follows from Gauss' divergence theorem goes via a well-known and often used exercise, which simply relates the concepts of divergence and curl on the local differential level. The rest of this article uses only integration in 1, 2 and 3 variables together with a "fattening" technique for surfaces and the inverse function theorem. (Contains 4 figures.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A