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Bowers style acronymIke
Coxeter diagramo5o3x (CDel node.pngCDel 5.pngCDel node.pngCDel 3.pngCDel node 1.png)
Schläfli symbol{3,5}
Faces20 triangles
Vertex figurePentagon, edge length 1
Icosahedron vertfig.png
Measures (edge length 1)
Edge radius
Dihedral angle
Central density1
Number of pieces20
Level of complexity1
Related polytopes
Petrie dualPetrial icosahedron
ConjugateGreat icosahedron
Abstract properties
Flag count120
Net count43380
Euler characteristic2
Topological properties
SymmetryH3, order 120

The icosahedron, or ike, is one of the five Platonic solids. It has 20 triangles as faces, joining 5 to a vertex.

An alternate, lower symmetry construction as a snub tetrahedron, furthermore relates the icosahedron to the snub polytopes, most notably to the snub disicositetrachoron, of which it is a cell.

It is the only Platonic solid that does not appear as a cell in one of the convex regular polychora, because its dihedral angle is more than 120° and thus 3 icosahedra cannot fit around an edge in 4D. It does, however, appear as the vertex figure of the hexacosichoron, and as the cell of the non-convex faceted hexacosichoron.

Vertex coordinates[edit | edit source]

The vertices of an icosahedron of edge length 1, centered at the origin, are all cyclic permutations of:

Representations[edit | edit source]

A regular icosahedron can be represented by the following Coxeter diagrams:

In vertex figures[edit | edit source]

Icosahedra in vertex figures
Name Picture Schläfli symbol Edge length
Great stellated hecatonicosachoron
Schlegel wireframe 600-cell vertex-centered.png
Order-5 cubic honeycomb
H3 435 CC center.png
Order-5 dodecahedral honeycomb
H3 535 CC center.png
Order-5 hexagonal tiling honeycomb
H3 635 FC boundary.png

Variations[edit | edit source]

An icosahedron has several variations as a snub polyhedron:

Related polyhedra[edit | edit source]

The icosahedron is the colonel of a two-member regiment that also includes the great dodecahedron.

The icosahedron is related to many Johnson solids. Most obviously, it can be constructed by joining two pentagonal pyramids to a pentagonal antiprism. This means the icosahedron could also be called a gyroelongated pentagonal bipyramid. Joining a single pentagonal pyramid, or diminishing one vertex from the icosahedron, yields the gyroelongated pentagonal pyramid, and replacing the antiprism by a pentagonal prism yields the elongated pentagonal pyramid and the elongated pentagonal bipyramid. Cutting off two pyramids from two non-parallel, non-adjacent vertices yields the metabidiminished icosahedron, and cutting off a further non-adjacent pyramid yields the tridiminished icosahedron.

A much less obvious connection is with the hebesphenomegacorona, which may be derived from the icosahedron by expanding a single edge into a square, thus turning the two adjacent faces into squares as well. Similarly, if we take two opposite edges of the icosahedron and "stretch" them into squares via a partial Stott expansion, we obtain the bilunabirotunda.

The icosahedron can be considered to be a snub triangular antiprism, by analogy with the snub disphenoid and snub square antiprism. This can be seen since the icosahedron can be constructed from the octahedron, that is a triangular antiprism, but cutting it into two halves and inserting a set of 12 triangles between the halves.

Two uniform polyhedron compounds are composed of icosahedra, both using it in pyritohedral symmetry:

The icosahedron has a multitude of stellations, not all of which are true polyhedra. They include the small triambic icosahedron, medial triambic icosahedron, great triambic icosahedron, great icosahedron, chiricosahedron, icosicosahedron, small icosicosahedron, ditrigonal icosahedron and the final stellation of the icosahedron.

The great icosahedron is the icosahedron's conjugate, meaning it is isomorphic. The icosahedron and great icosahedron are only two of the many polyhedra made of equilateral triangles with that abstract structure. For example, one of the pyramids of the icosahedron can be inverted, producing an irregular polyhedron that is concave but with no intersections. More can be found here.

o5o3o truncations
Name OBSA Schläfli symbol CD diagram Picture
Dodecahedron doe {5,3} x5o3o
Uniform polyhedron-53-t0.png
Truncated dodecahedron tid t{5,3} x5x3o
Uniform polyhedron-53-t01.png
Icosidodecahedron id r{5,3} o5x3o
Uniform polyhedron-53-t1.png
Truncated icosahedron ti t{3,5} o5x3x
Uniform polyhedron-53-t12.png
Icosahedron ike {3,5} o5o3x
Uniform polyhedron-53-t2.png
Small rhombicosidodecahedron srid rr{5,3} x5o3x
Uniform polyhedron-53-t02.png
Great rhombicosidodecahedron grid tr{5,3} x5x3x
Uniform polyhedron-53-t012.png
Snub dodecahedron snid sr{5,3} s5s3s
Uniform polyhedron-53-s012.png
o3o3o truncations
Name OBSA Schläfli symbol CD diagram Picture
Tetrahedron tet {3,3} x3o3o
Uniform polyhedron-33-t0.png
Truncated tetrahedron tut t{3,3} x3x3o
Uniform polyhedron-33-t01.png
Tetratetrahedron = Octahedron oct r{3,3} o3x3o
Uniform polyhedron-33-t1.png
Truncated tetrahedron tut t{3,3} o3x3x
Uniform polyhedron-33-t12.png
Tetrahedron tet {3,3} o3o3x
Uniform polyhedron-33-t2.png
Small rhombitetratetrahedron = Cuboctahedron co rr{3,3} x3o3x
Uniform polyhedron-33-t02.png
Great rhombitetratetrahedron = Truncated octahedron toe tr{3,3} x3x3x
Uniform polyhedron-33-t012.png
Snub tetrahedron = Icosahedron ike sr{3,3} s3s3s
Uniform polyhedron-33-s012.png

External links[edit | edit source]

  • Klitzing, Richard. "Ike".