Rotating a Cube Using Quaternions

A quaternion can represent both a rotation axis and the angle of rotation about this axis (a vector and a scalar). Instead of turning an object through a series of successive rotations with rotation matrices, quaternions are used to rotate an object more smoothly around an arbitrary axis (here ) and at any angle. This program uses the quaternion rotation formula: with (a pure quaternion), , and for a unit quaternion , such that if , . A derivation of these formulas is given in [1].



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[1] Wikipedia. "Quaternions and Spatial Rotation." (Feb 9, 2016) _rotation.
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