Geometric Net

Pronunciation: /ˌdʒi əˈmɛt rɪk nɛt/ ?

A geometric net is a 2-dimensional shape that folds into a 3-dimensional shape, usually a polyhedron. Each side of the polyhedron is a polygon. The simplest nets have four sides and are called tetrahedra.

There can be multiple nets that fold into the same 3-dimensional figure. Here are a few examples of nets of cubes:
Example of a geometric net for a cube 1 Example of a geometric net for a cube 2 Example of a geometric net for a cube 3

Not every 2-dimensional figure of polygons can be folded into a 3-dimensional shape. Here are some figures with six squares that are not nets of cubes:
Negative example of a geometric net for a cube 1 Negative example of a geometric net for a cube 2 Negative example of a geometric net for a cube 3

Printable Nets

ExampleNamePrintable Net
Elongated Triangular Pyramidnet_elong_triangular_pyramid.pdf
Great Stellated Dodecahedronnet_g_stelltd_dodecahedron.pdf
Octagonal Antiprismnet_octagonal_antiprism.pdf
Octagonal Prismnet_octagonal_prism.pdf
Pentagonal Antiprismnet_pentagonal_antiprism.pdf
Pentagonal Prismnet_pentagonal_prism.pdf
Pentagonal Pyramidnet_pentagonal_pyramid.pdf
Regular Octahedronnet_regular_octahedron.pdf
Snub Cubenet_snub_cube.pdf
Snub Dodecahedronnet_snub_dodecahedron.pdf
Square Antiprismnet_square_antiprism.pdf
Square Pyramidnet_square_pyramid.pdf
Stella Octangulanet_stella_octangula.pdf
Stellated Dodecahedronnet_stellated_dodecahedron.pdf
Triangular Pentahedronnet_triang_pentahedron.pdf
Triangular Dipyramidnet_triangular_dipyramid.pdf
Truncated Dodecahedronnet_trunc_dodecahedron.pdf
Truncated Icosidodecahedronnet_trunc_icosidodecahedron.pdf
Truncated Cubenet_truncated_cube.pdf
Truncated Cuboctahedronnet_truncated_cuboctahedron.pdf
Truncated Icosahedronnet_truncated_icosahedron.pdf
Truncated Octahedronnet_truncated_octahedron.pdf
Truncated Tetrahedronnet_truncated_tetrahedron.pdf


  1. net. Encyclopedia Britannica. (Accessed: 2010-02-06).
  2. Malkevitch, Joseph. Nets: A Tool for Representing Polyhedra in Two Dimensions. Feature Column: Monthly Essays on Mathematical Topics. American Mathematical Society. (Accessed: 2010-02-06).

Cite this article as:

Geometric Net. 2010-02-06. All Math Words Encyclopedia. Life is a Story Problem LLC.


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Revision History

2010-02-06: Added "References" (McAdams, David.)
2008-09-25: Initial version (McAdams, David.)

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