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Simoson, Andrew J. – PRIMUS, 2009

This article presents a fun activity of generating a double-minded fractal image for a linear algebra class once the idea of rotation and scaling matrices are introduced. In particular the fractal flip-flops between two words, depending on the level at which the image is viewed. (Contains 5 figures.)

Descriptors: Geometric Concepts, Matrices, Mathematics Instruction, Mathematical Concepts

Simoson, Andrew J. – PRIMUS, 2008

Since Albrecht Durer studied the trochoid curves in a 1525 treatise on geometry called "The Art of Measurement with Compass and Straightedge," it is natural to wonder whether he used them in his artwork. We therefore consider several pieces on which we overlay hypocycloids, limacons, and epicycloids so as to check for good matches in a fun…

Descriptors: Artists, Geometry, Art Expression, Studio Art

Simoson, Andrew J. – PRIMUS, 2007

For a given orbital period and eccentricity, we determine the maximum time lapse between the winter solstice and the spring equinox on a planet. In addition, given an axial precession path, we determine the effects on the seasons. This material can be used at various levels to illustrate ideas such as periodicity, eccentricity, polar coordinates,…

Descriptors: Astronomy, Calculus, Algebra, Geometry

Simoson, Andrew J. – PRIMUS, 2005

We present a project for a differential equations class: an analysis of an H. G. Wells story in which is given a submersible's descent time, its ascent time, and its eruption from the surface before splashdown. (Contains 5 figures.)

Descriptors: Mathematics, Equations (Mathematics), Literature Reviews, Mathematics Instruction

Simoson, Andrew J. – PRIMUS, 2004

We describe a project for calculus and differential equations students involving trajectories of a spacecraft whose propulsion system depends solely on muting gravitational effects of heavenly bodies. In particular, we consider the spacecraft imagined by H. G. Wells, and focus on getting his spacecraft from the Moon to the Earth. Cavorite, angular…

Descriptors: Astronomy, Motion, Calculus, Mathematics Instruction