Nick McGreivy, Caoxiang Zhu, Lee Gunderson, Stuart R. Hudson
One common approach to computing the magnetic field produced by a filamentary current-carrying coil is to approximate the coil as a series of straight segments. The Biot-Savart field from each straight segment is known analytically. However, if the endpoints of the straight segments are chosen to lie on the coil, then the accuracy of the Biot-Savart computation is generally only second-order in the number of endpoints. We propose a simple modification: shift each endpoint off the coil in the outwards normal direction by an amount proportional to the local curvature. With this modification, the Biot-Savart accuracy is higher order and the numerical error is dramatically reduced for a given number of discretization points.