Curl of Some Vector Fields

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The curl of a vector field produces another vector field. Pictorially, the direction of rotation of the field produced by operation of the curl in an infinitesimal neighborhood of a point in 3D space defines the direction of at the point . A curl of positive magnitude spins in a counterclockwise direction around , in accordance with the "right-hand rule". The angular speed of the rotation equals 1/2 the magnitude of the curl at the point .

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The third Snapshot shows a conservative vector field that has a constant curl equal to zero at every point.

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Contributed by: Ryan Zhan (February 2016)
Open content licensed under CC BY-NC-SA


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