Great circle distance is the shortest distance between any two points on a sphere.
Because the Earth is approximately spherical, the great circle distance is commonly used to find the distance (e.g. in miles) between two coordinates (latitude/longitude pairs) on a map. First, some definitions:
|Table of contents|
2 The Formula
3 Practical Application
4 See Also
You will have to convert these coordinates to a more mathematically friendly form using a simple method before you can use them effectively in a formula. After conversion, the coordinates become:
SubstituteThe first step is simply to substitute numbers where appropriate. This is best done in small steps to keep each step manageable: