A path, also known as a rhumb line, which cuts a meridian on a given surface at any constant angle but a right
angle. If the surface is a sphere, the loxodrome is
a spherical spiral. The loxodrome is the path
taken when a compass is kept pointing in a constant direction. It is a straight line
on a Mercator projection or a logarithmic
spiral on a polar projection (Steinhaus 1999, pp. 218-219). The loxodrome
is *not* the shortest distance between two points on a sphere.

# Loxodrome

## See also

Great Circle, Sphere, Spherical Spiral## Explore with Wolfram|Alpha

## References

Nord, J. "Mercator's Rhumb Lines: A Multivariable Application of Arclength."*College Math. J.*

**27**, 384-387, 1996.Steinhaus, H.

*Mathematical Snapshots, 3rd ed.*New York: Dover, pp. 217-221, 1999.

## Referenced on Wolfram|Alpha

Loxodrome## Cite this as:

Weisstein, Eric W. "Loxodrome." From *MathWorld*--A Wolfram Web Resource. https://mathworld.wolfram.com/Loxodrome.html