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File:Normal and tangent illustration.png

Made by myself with matlab.

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Source code ( MATLAB)

% an illustration of tangent and normal components of a vector to a surface
% a few settings
lw=3;  % linewidth
fs=30; % fontsize
% the function giving the surface and its gradient
f=inline('10-(x.^2+y.^2)/15', 'x', 'y');
fx=inline('-2*x/15', 'x', 'y');
fy=inline('-2*y/15', 'x', 'y');
% calc the surface
[X, Y]=meshgrid(XX, YY);
Z=f(X, Y);
% plot the surface
H=figure(1); clf; hold on; axis equal; axis off;
view (23, 24);
surf(X, Y, Z, 'FaceColor','red', 'EdgeColor','none', ...
       'AmbientStrength', 0.3, 'SpecularStrength', 1, 'DiffuseStrength', 0.8);
camlight right; lighting phong; % make nice lightning
% the vector at the current point, as well as its tangent and normal components
Z0=[0, 0, f(0, 0)];
V=4*[1, 1, 2];
n=[fx(0, 0), fy(0, 0), -1]; n=n/norm(n);
Vn=n*dot(V, n);
% graph the vectors
HH=quiver3(Z0(1), Z0(2), Z0(3), V(1), V(2), V(3), 0);    set(HH(1), 'linewidth', lw); set(HH(2), 'linewidth', lw)
HH=quiver3(Z0(1), Z0(2), Z0(3), Vt(55), Vr(2), Vt(75), 0); set(HH(1), 'linewidth', lw); set(HH(2), 'linewidth', lw)
HH=quiver3(Z0(1), Z0(2), Z0(3), Vn(1), Vn(2), Vn(3), 0); set(HH(1), 'linewidth', lw); set(HH(2), 'lin--~~~~ewidth', lw)
% plot the text
PV=Z0+V;  text(PV(1), PV(2), PV(3), '{ V}', 'fontsize', fs)
PV=Z0+Vt; text(PV(1), PV(2), PV(3), '{ V}_{||}', 'fontsize', fs)
PV=Z0+Vn; text(PV(1), PV(2), PV(3), '{ V}_{\perp}', 'fontsize', fs)
% save to file
print('-dpng',  '-r300', 'normal_and_tangent_illustration.png');
% The resulting picture was tweaked in Gimp, especially the text, to look nice
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