A Platonic Solid () with 12 Vertices, 30 Edges, and 20 equivalent Equilateral Triangle faces . It is described by the Schläfli Symbol . It is also Uniform Polyhedron and has Wythoff Symbol . The icosahedron has the Icosahedral Group of symmetries.

A plane Perpendicular to a axis of an icosahedron cuts the solid in a regular Decagonal Cross-Section (Holden 1991, pp. 24-25).

A construction for an icosahedron with side length
places the end vertices at )
and the central vertices around two staggered Circles of Radii
and
heights
, giving coordinates

(1) |

(2) | |||

(3) | |||

(4) | |||

(5) | |||

(6) |

By a suitable rotation, the Vertices of an icosahedron of side length 2 can also be placed at , , and , where is the Golden Ratio. These points divide the Edges of an Octahedron into segments with lengths in the ratio .

The Dual Polyhedron of the icosahedron is the Dodecahedron. There are 59 distinct icosahedra when each Triangle is colored differently (Coxeter 1969).

To derive the Volume of an icosahedron having edge length , consider the orientation so that two
Vertices are oriented on top and bottom. The vertical distance between the top and bottom
Pentagonal Dipyramids is then given by

(7) |

(8) |

(9) |

(10) |

(11) |

which is identical to the radius of a Pentagon of side . The Circumradius is then

(12) |

(13) |

(14) |

Taking the square root gives the Circumradius

(15) |

(16) |

(17) |

so

(18) |

The Area of one face is the Area of an Equilateral Triangle

(19) |

(20) |

Apollonius showed that

(21) |

**References**

Coxeter, H. S. M. *Introduction to Geometry, 2nd ed.* New York: Wiley, 1969.

Davie, T. ``The Icosahedron.'' http://www.dcs.st-and.ac.uk/~ad/mathrecs/polyhedra/icosahedron.html.

Holden, A. *Shapes, Space, and Symmetry.* New York: Dover, 1991.

Klein, F. *Lectures on the Icosahedron.* New York: Dover, 1956.

Pappas, T. ``The Icosahedron & the Golden Rectangle.'' *The Joy of Mathematics.*
San Carlos, CA: Wide World Publ./Tetra, p. 115, 1989.

© 1996-9

1999-05-26