```

```

## NAME

```       fitcircle  -  find  mean position and pole of best-fit great [or small]
circle to points on a sphere.

```

## SYNOPSIS

```       fitcircle [ xyfile ] -Lnorm [ -H[nrec] ] [ -S  ]  [  -V  ]  [  -:  ]  [
-bi[s][n] ] [ -f[i|o]colinfo ]

```

## DESCRIPTION

```       fitcircle  reads lon,lat [or lat,lon] values from the first two columns
on standard input [or xyfile]. These are converted to Cartesian  three-
vectors  on  the unit sphere. Then two locations are found: the mean of
the input positions, and the pole to the great circle which  best  fits
the  input  positions.  The user may choose one or both of two possible
solutions to this problem. The first is called -L1 and  the  second  is
called -L2. When the data are closely grouped along a great circle both
solutions are similar. If the data have large dispersion, the  pole  to
the  great  circle  will be less well determined than the mean. Compare
both solutions as a qualitative check.

The -L1 solution is so called because it approximates the  minimization
of  the  sum  of  absolute values of cosines of angular distances. This
solution finds the mean position as the Fisher average of the data, and
the  pole  position as the Fisher average of the cross-products between
the mean and the data. Averaging cross-products gives weight to  points
in proportion to their distance from the mean, analogous to the "lever-
age" of distant points in linear regression in the plane.

The -L2 solution is so called because it approximates the  minimization
of  the  sum of squares of cosines of angular distances. It creates a 3
by 3 matrix of sums of squares of components of the data  vectors.  The
eigenvectors  of  this  matrix  give  the mean and pole locations. This
method may be more subject to roundoff errors when there are  thousands
of  data.  The  pole  is  given by the eigenvector corresponding to the
smallest eigenvalue; it is the least-well  represented  factor  in  the
data and is not easily estimated by either method.

-L     Specify the desired norm as 1 or 2, or use -L or -L3 to see both
solutions.

```

## OPTIONS

```       xyfile ASCII [or binary, see -b] file containing lon,lat [lat,lon] val-
ues  in  the first 2 columns. If no file is specified, fitcircle
will read from standard input.

-H     Input file(s) has Header record(s). Number of header records can
be  changed  by  editing  your  .gmtdefaults4 file. If used, GMT
default is 1 header record. Use -Hi if only  input  data  should
have  header  records  [Default will write out header records if
the input data have them].

-S     Attempt to fit a small circle instead of  a  great  circle.  The
pole  will  be constrained to lie on the great circle connecting
the pole of the best-fit great circle and the mean  location  of
the data.

-V     Selects verbose mode, which will send progress reports to stderr
[Default runs "silently"].

-:     Toggles between  (longitude,latitude)  and  (latitude,longitude)
input  and/or output. [Default is (longitude,latitude)].  Append
i to select input only or o  to  select  output  only.  [Default
affects both].

-bi    Selects  binary input. Append s for single precision [Default is
double].  Append n for the  number  of  columns  in  the  binary
file(s).
[Default is 2 input columns].

-f     Special  formatting  of  input  and output columns (time or geo-
graphical data) Specify i(nput) or  o(utput)  [Default  is  both
input  and output].  Give one or more columns (or column ranges)
separated by commas.  Append T (Absolute calendar time), t (time
relative  to  chosen TIME_EPOCH), x (longitude), y (latitude), g
(geographic coordinate), or f (floating point) to each column or
column range item.

```

## EXAMPLES

```       Suppose  you  have  lon,lat,grav  data along a twisty ship track in the
file ship.xyg. You want to project this data onto a  great  circle  and
resample  it  in distance, in order to filter it or check its spectrum.
Do the following:

fitcircle ship.xyg -L2

project ship.xyg -Cox/oy -Tpx/py -S -Fpz | sample1d -S-100 -I1  >  out-
put.pg

Here, ox/oy is the lon/lat of the mean from fitcircle, and px/py is the
lon/lat of the pole. The file output.pg has distance, gravity data sam-
pled every 1 km along the great circle which best fits ship.xyg

```

```       gmt(l), project(l), sample1d(l)