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Mercator projection

or Mercator's projection

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noun Cartography.
  1. a conformal projection on which any rhumb line is represented as a straight line, used chiefly in navigation, though the scale varies with latitude and areal size and the shapes of large areas are greatly distorted.
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Origin of Mercator projection

First recorded in 1660–70
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for mercator projection

Mercator projection

noun
  1. an orthomorphic map projection on which parallels and meridians form a rectangular grid, scale being exaggerated with increasing distance from the equatorAlso called: Mercator's projection
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Word Origin

C17: named after G. Mercator
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

mercator projection in Science

Mercator projection

  1. A cylindrical projection of the Earth's surface developed by Gerhardus Mercator. As in other such projections, the areas farther from the equator appear larger, making the polar regions greatly distorted. However, the faithful representation of direction in a Mercator projection makes it ideal for navigation. See more at cylindrical projection.
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The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

mercator projection in Culture

Mercator projection

[(muhr-kay-tuhr)]

A way of showing the sphere of the Earth on the flat surface of a map. Because this projection is centered on the equator, in order to maintain the correct shape of the features shown, the spacing between the parallels of latitude increases with the increasing distance from the equator. This tends to enlarge the size of those features located nearer the poles, such as Greenland or New Zealand, giving a false picture of their relative size.

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The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.