Mapping Toolbox™ includes a set of functions that calculate the intersections of vector data, such as great circles, small circles, and rhumb line tracks. The functions also determine intersections of arbitrary vector data.
|Find intersection points for pairs of great circles on the sphere|
|Find intersection points for pairs of small circles on the sphere|
|Find intersection points, if any, for pairs of rhumb lines|
|Find intersection points, if any, between a great circle and a small circle on the sphere|
|Find intersection points for lines or polygon edges in the plane|
In general, small circles intersect twice or never, as shown in the following figure.
For the case of exact tangency,
scxsc returns two identical
intersection points. To see an example of using
scxsc, see Calculate Intersections of Small Circles.
To illustrate finding the intersection of rhumb lines, imagine a ship setting sail
from Norfolk, Virginia (37°N,76°W), maintaining a steady due-east course (90°), and
another ship setting sail from Dakar, Senegal (15°N,17°W), with a steady northwest
course (315°). Where would the tracks of the two vessels cross? The intersection of the
tracks is at (37°N,41.7°W), which is roughly 600 nautical miles west of the Azores in
the Atlantic Ocean. To see an example of using
rhxrh, see Calculate Intersection of Rhumb Line Tracks.