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Unwrapping Curves from Cylinders and Cones

by Tom M. Apostol, Mamikon A. Mnatsakanian

Year of Award: 2008

Award: Lester R. Ford

Publication Information: The American Mathematical Monthly, vol. 114, (2007), pp. 388–416

Summary: Using two-dimensional geometric transformations, the author demonstrates sinusoid curves from unwrapping circular cylinders and cones.

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About the Author(s): (from The American Mathematical Monthly, (2007))

Tom M. Apostol joined the Caltech mathematics faculty in 1950 and became professor emeritus in 1992. He is director of Project MATHEMATICS! ( an award-winning series of videos he initiated in 1987. His long career in mathematics is described in the September 1997 issue of The College Mathematics Journal. He is currently working with colleague Mamikon Mnatsakanian to produce materials demonstrating Mamikon’s innovative and exciting approach to mathematics.

Mamikon A. Mnatsakanian received a Ph. D. in physics in 1969 from Yerevan University, where he became professor of astrophysics. As an undergraduate he began developing innovative geometric methods for solving many calculus problems by a dynamic and visual approach that makes no use of formulas. He is currently working with Tom Apostol under the auspices of Project MATHEMATICS! to present his methods in a multimedia format.


Subject classification(s): Geometry and Topology | Transformations | Index
Publication Date: 
Wednesday, October 22, 2008