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Line integral of a scalar field

  1. Feb 16, 2012 #1
    Okay this might be a nooby question, but it bothers me.

    What is the difference between the line integral of a scalar field and just a regular integral over the scalar field?

    For a function of one variable i certainly can't see the difference. But then I thought they might be identical in this case. Is that true?
    Because then I can see that in n dimensions where n≠1, you can generally choose infinately many paths between 2 points.
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 17, 2012 #2

    HallsofIvy

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    If the "field" is one dimensional, there cannot be a difference. If the field has dimension 2 or higher, there are an infinite number of different paths through the field.
     
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