A circle on the surface of a sphere that lies in a plane passing through the sphere’s center. As it represents the shortest distance between any two points on a sphere, a great circle of the earth is the preferred route taken by a ship or aircraft.
More example sentences
- A spherical triangle is the space included by arcs of great circles on the surface of a sphere… these arcs are always less than a semicircle.
- It consisted of a system of rings corresponding to the great circles of the celestial sphere with a central tube which was used to line up stars and planets.
- The great circle distances between the latitude and longitude coordinates of the population centroids for each pair of counties were used in the denominator.
Definition of great circle in:
- The British & World English dictionary