Concept

Cylinder

Summary
A cylinder () has traditionally been a three-dimensional solid, one of the most basic of curvilinear geometric shapes. In elementary geometry, it is considered a prism with a circle as its base. A cylinder may also be defined as an infinite curvilinear surface in various modern branches of geometry and topology. The shift in the basic meaning—solid versus surface (as in ball and sphere)—has created some ambiguity with terminology. The two concepts may be distinguished by referring to solid cylinders and cylindrical surfaces. In the literature the unadorned term cylinder could refer to either of these or to an even more specialized object, the right circular cylinder. The definitions and results in this section are taken from the 1913 text Plane and Solid Geometry by George Wentworth and David Eugene Smith . A is a surface consisting of all the points on all the lines which are parallel to a given line and which pass through a fixed plane curve in a plane not parallel to the given line. Any line in this family of parallel lines is called an element of the cylindrical surface. From a kinematics point of view, given a plane curve, called the directrix, a cylindrical surface is that surface traced out by a line, called the generatrix, not in the plane of the directrix, moving parallel to itself and always passing through the directrix. Any particular position of the generatrix is an element of the cylindrical surface. A solid bounded by a cylindrical surface and two parallel planes is called a (solid) . The line segments determined by an element of the cylindrical surface between the two parallel planes is called an element of the cylinder. All the elements of a cylinder have equal lengths. The region bounded by the cylindrical surface in either of the parallel planes is called a of the cylinder. The two bases of a cylinder are congruent figures. If the elements of the cylinder are perpendicular to the planes containing the bases, the cylinder is a , otherwise it is called an .