rotations: An R Package for SO(3) Data

In this article we introduce the rotations package which provides users with the ability to simulate, analyze and visualize three-dimensional rotation data. More specifically it includes four commonly used distributions from which to simulate data, four estimators of the central orientation, six confidence region estimation procedures and two approaches to visualizing rotation data. All of these features are available for two different parameterizations of rotations: three-by-three matrices and quaternions. In addition, two datasets are included that illustrate the use of rotation data in practice.

Bryan Stanfill , Heike Hofmann , Ulrike Genschel

CRAN packages used

orientlib, onion, circular, SpherWave, rotations, ggplot2, sphereplot, Rcpp, RcppArmadillo

CRAN Task Views implied by cited packages

NumericalMathematics, Graphics, Environmetrics, HighPerformanceComputing, Phylogenetics


Text and figures are licensed under Creative Commons Attribution CC BY 4.0. The figures that have been reused from other sources don't fall under this license and can be recognized by a note in their caption: "Figure from ...".


For attribution, please cite this work as

Stanfill, et al., "The R Journal: rotations: An R Package for SO(3) Data", The R Journal, 2014

BibTeX citation

  author = {Stanfill, Bryan and Hofmann, Heike and Genschel, Ulrike},
  title = {The R Journal: rotations: An R Package for SO(3) Data},
  journal = {The R Journal},
  year = {2014},
  note = {},
  doi = {10.32614/RJ-2014-007},
  volume = {6},
  issue = {1},
  issn = {2073-4859},
  pages = {68-78}