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Type: Journal article
Title: Drilling for polygons
Author: Cox, B.
Wagon, S.
Citation: American Mathematical Monthly, 2012; 119(4):300-312
Publisher: Mathematical Assoc Amer
Issue Date: 2012
ISSN: 0002-9890
Statement of
Barry Cox and Stan Wagon
Abstract: We solve the problem of designing a simple device that uses rotary motion to drill a hole with a cross-section that is a regular polygon with an odd number of sides: the main idea is to use a polygonal trammel and a family of rotors. By using different rotors, one can produce a hole with a cross-section that is in any proportion of the trammel size from zero to exactly one. The key geometric idea is a result about the envelope of an edge of a triangle that rotates so that the other two edges maintain tangential contact with two fixed circles.
Rights: Copyright The Mathematical Association of America
RMID: 0020118984
DOI: 10.4169/amer.math.monthly.119.04.300
Appears in Collections:Mathematical Sciences publications

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