An ellipsoid is a closed quadric surface that is a three-dimensional analogue of an ellipse. In geodesy, a reference ellipsoid is a mathematically-defined surface that approximates the geoid, the truer figure of the Earth, or other planetary body.

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Are ellipsoids a mathematical necessity?

The literature usually just tells us that the Geoid is complex to describe mathematically and that we therefore fit different Ellipsoids to approximate it. Are these Ellipsoids mathematically ...
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What's a term for Sea Level Distance which is usable by novice users?

I've been using the term Sea Level Distance to describe the total length of a line string where I ignore the elevation and just calculate the distance from point to point along the ellipsoid and sum ...
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“Horizontal” and vertical datums terminology

I have heard people referring to as a horizontal datum to models such as WGS84 and as a vertical datum to geoids. The former is primarily used for determining latitude and longitude but also the ...