Antiprism

In geometry, an n-gonal antiprism or n-antiprism is a polyhedron composed of two parallel direct copies (not mirror images) of an n-sided polygon, connected by an alternating band of 2n triangles.

Antiprisms are a subclass of prismatoids, and are a (degenerate) type of snub polyhedron.

Antiprisms are similar to prisms, except that the bases are twisted relatively to each other, and that the side faces (connecting the bases) are 2n triangles, rather than n quadrilaterals.

For an antiprism with regular n-gon bases, one usually considers the case where these two copies are twisted by an angle of 180/n degrees.

The axis of a regular polygon is the line perpendicular to the polygon plane and lying in the polygon centre.

For an antiprism with congruent regular n-gon bases, twisted by an angle of 180/n degrees, more regularity is obtained if the bases have the same axis: are coaxial; i.e. (for non-coplanar bases): if the line connecting the base centers is perpendicular to the base planes. Then, the antiprism is called a right antiprism, and its 2n side faces are isosceles triangles.

A uniform antiprism has two congruent regular n-gon base faces, and 2n equilateral triangles as side faces.

Uniform antiprisms form an infinite class of vertex-transitive polyhedra, as do uniform prisms. For n = 2, we have the regular tetrahedron as a digonal antiprism (degenerate antiprism); for n = 3, the regular octahedron as a triangular antiprism (non-degenerate antiprism).

The existence of antiprisms was discussed and their name was coined by Johannes Kepler, though it is possible that they were previously known to Archimedes, as they satisfy the same conditions on faces and on vertices as the Archimedean solids.

Cartesian coordinates for the vertices of a right antiprism (i.e. with regular n-gon bases and isosceles side faces) are

There are an infinite set of truncated antiprisms, including a lower-symmetry form of the truncated octahedron (truncated triangular antiprism). These can be alternated to create snub antiprisms, two of which are Johnson solids, and the snub triangular antiprism is a lower symmetry form of the icosahedron.

The symmetry group of a right n-antiprism (i.e. with regular bases and isosceles side faces) is Dnd of order 4n, except in the cases of:

This shows all the non-star and star antiprisms up to 15 sides - together with those of an icosikaienneagon.

A right star antiprism has two congruent coaxial regular convex or star polygon base faces, and 2n isosceles triangle side faces.

Any star antiprism with regular convex or star polygon bases can be made a right star antiprism (by translating and/or twisting one of its bases, if necessary).

In the retrograde forms but not in the prograde forms, the triangles joining the convex or star bases intersect the axis of rotational symmetry. Thus:

Also, star antiprism compounds with regular star p/q-gon bases can be constructed if p and q have common factors. Example: a star 10/4-antiprism is the compound of two star 5/2-antiprisms.