icosahedral

adjective

ico·​sa·​he·​dral (ˌ)ī-ˌkō-sə-ˈhē-drəl How to pronounce icosahedral (audio)
-ˌkä-
: of or having the form of an icosahedron

Examples of icosahedral in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Fuller started by building icosahedral domes but realized that larger structures containing more than twenty triangles could be made by taking the primary triangles and systematically assembling them into larger triangles, each of which could then be used to build an icosahedron. Judith Graf, The New York Review of Books, 1 Dec. 2022 The two components comprise proteins that are made separately and, when combined, self-assemble into a 128-subunit particle (VLP) with multifaceted icosahedral symmetry (imagine a soccer ball). Laura Defrancesco, Scientific American, 6 Jan. 2022 James Watson and Francis Crick in 1956 postulated that viruses solve this challenge by building icosahedral capsids from twenty triangular building blocks, each comprising three identical proteins. Judith Graf, The New York Review of Books, 1 Dec. 2022 Thinking of the Fuller domes, the group made the interpretive leap (later borne out through testing) that this molecule might look like one: a closed cage structure, with icosahedral symmetry. Rebecca Onion, The New Republic, 19 Aug. 2022 However, nature’s radiolarian examples are the most stunning instances of icosahedral symmetry and well worth a careful look. George Hart, Scientific American, 22 Mar. 2013 Most phages have an icosahedral head—like a die with 20 triangular faces. Charles Schmidt, Scientific American, 1 Nov. 2019 But most icosahedral viral capsids comprise a much larger number of subunits, and placing the proteins in this way never allows for more than 60. Quanta Magazine, 19 July 2017

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'icosahedral.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

circa 1828, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of icosahedral was circa 1828

Dictionary Entries Near icosahedral

Cite this Entry

“Icosahedral.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/icosahedral. Accessed 22 May. 2024.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!