# Finding several polar coordinates of a single point

The name of this American project camouflages the fact that it has the potential for being a greater catastrophe for mankind than the creation of the atomic bomb. Use a value of 1mm of uncertainty on non-USGS maps. By this rule, the uncertainty for a map of scale 1: Distance uncertainties in any given direction are linear and additive.

Following is an example of a simple locality description and an explanation of the manner in which multiple sources of uncertainty interact to result in an overall maximum error distance.

The possible sources of uncertainty for this example are 1 the extent of Bakersfield, 2 unknown datum, 3 distance imprecision, and 4 map scale.

Suppose the center of Bakersfield is 3 km from the eastern city limit and the distance is being measured on a USGS map at 1: The uncertainty due to the extent of Bakersfield is 3 km, there is no uncertainty due to an unknown datum assuming the datum is recorded with the coordinatesthe distance imprecision is 1 km, and the uncertainty due to map scale is 51 meters.

The maximum error distance for this locality is the sum of these, or 4.

## Calculus III - Functions of Several Variables

Ignore for the moment all sources of uncertainty except those arising from distance imprecision. Under this simplification, a proper description of the uncertainty is a bounding box centered on the point 6 km E and 8 km N of Bakersfield.

Each side of the box is 2 km in length 1 km uncertainty in each cardinal direction from the center. Since we are characterizing the maximum error as a single distance measurement, we need the circle that circumscribes the above-mentioned bounding box.

The radius of this circle is the distance from the center of the box to any corner. The radius could either be measured on a map or calculated using a right triangle, the hypotenuse of which is the line between the center of the bounding box and a corner.

Given the rule that the distance precision is the same in both cardinal directions, the triangle will always be a right isosceles triangle and the hypotenuse will always be the the square root of 2 times the distance precision. So, for the above example the error distance associated with only the distance precision would be 1. So far we have accounted only for distance imprecision for this example. How do we take into account the uncertainty due to the shape of the named place? There are many methods that could be used to determine the coordinates and error for this situation.

The method presented here is quite conservative, resulting in errors larger than they need to be. A better alternative would be to multiply only the distance precision error by the square root of 2 contributions in both dimensionsand then sum that with all other sources, which already account for the two dimensions.

This second method is the one used in the Georeferencing Calculator since version Determine the furthest distance within the named place from the geographic center of the named place in either of the two cardinal directions mentioned in the locality description.

Add this distance to the distance precision and take the square root of 2 times the sum to get the maximum error distance associated with the combination of distance precision and the extent of the named place. For the example above, suppose the furthest extent of the city limits of Bakersfield either E or N from the geographic center is 3 km. There would be a total of 4 km of uncertainty in each of the two directions and the radius of the circumscribing circle would be 4 km times the square root of 2, or 5.

What other sources of uncertainty need to be accounted for in this example? Suppose the coordinates for Bakersfield were taken from the GNIS database, in which there is no reference to datum and the coordinates are given to the nearest second. At this location the uncertainty due to an unknown datum is 79 meters.

## Polar coordinate system - Wikipedia

The datum uncertainty contributes in each of the orthogonal directions. Thus, the uncertainty in each direction would be 4. The coordinates in the GNIS database are given to the nearest second. Based on the Uncertainty associated with coordinate precision section, above, the uncertainty due to coordinate precision alone is about 39 meters at the latitude of Bakersfield.

This number already accounts for the contributions in both cardinal directions, so it must not be multiplied by the square root of 2. Instead, simply add the coordinate precision uncertainty to the calculated sum of uncertainties from the other sources.

For the example above, the maximum error distance is just 5. However, the uncertainty due to the map scale would have to be considered. For a USGS map at 1: In the above example, the net uncertainty in each direction would be 4. When multiplied by the square root of 2 their combination would be 5.

Add the uncertainty due to coordinate imprecision to get the maximum error distance.Oct 29,  · Finding multiple sets of polar coordinates for a given point Polar Coordinates Naming All Polar Coordinates for a Point - Duration: Brendon Ferullo 7, views.

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Uncertainty due to GPS accuracy The accuracy of the coordinate data reported by a GPS varies with time, place, and equipment used. Previous to the order to cease Selective Availability (deliberate GPS signal scrambling) at 8PM EST 1 May , uncorrected GPS receivers were subject to artificial inaccuracies of about meters.

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