Pronunciation: /ˈhi.lɪks/ Explain

A metal spring in the form of a helix.
Figure 1: Helix.

A helix is a curve formed by a straight line drawn on a plane when that plane is wrapped around a cylinder. The equation for a helix is a parametric equation where the independent variable θ is an angle on the x-y plane: x = a sin θ, y = a cos θ, z = bθ. a controls the width of the helix. b controls the distance between the coils.


  1. McAdams, David E.. All Math Words Dictionary, helix. 2nd Classroom edition 20150108-4799968. pg 90. Life is a Story Problem LLC. January 8, 2015. Buy the book

Cite this article as:

McAdams, David E. Helix. 4/22/2019. All Math Words Encyclopedia. Life is a Story Problem LLC. http://www.allmathwords.org/en/h/helix.html.

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Revision History

4/22/2019: Update equations and expressions to new format. (McAdams, David E.)
12/21/2018: Reviewed and corrected IPA pronunication. (McAdams, David E.)
7/16/2018: Removed broken links, updated license, implemented new markup, implemented new Geogebra protocol. (McAdams, David E.)
10/25/2010: Initial version. (McAdams, David E.)

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