Rhombic dodecahedral honeycomb

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Rhombic dodecahedral honeycomb
Type convex uniform honeycomb dual
Coxeter-Dynkin diagram =
Cell type
Rhombic dodecahedron V3.4.3.4
Face types Rhombus
Space group Fm3m (225)
Coxeter notation ½, [1+,4,3,4]
, [4,31,1]
×2, <[3[4]]>
Dual tetrahedral-octahedral honeycomb
Properties edge-transitive, face-transitive, cell-transitive

The rhombic dodecahedral honeycomb (also dodecahedrille) is a space-filling tessellation (or honeycomb) in Euclidean 3-space. It is the Voronoi diagram of the face-centered cubic sphere-packing, which has the densest possible packing of equal spheres in ordinary space (see Kepler conjecture).


It consists of copies of a single cell, the rhombic dodecahedron. All faces are rhombi, with diagonals in the ratio 1:2. Three cells meet at each edge. The honeycomb is thus cell-transitive, face-transitive, and edge-transitive; but it is not vertex-transitive, as it has two kinds of vertex. The vertices with the obtuse rhombic face angles have 4 cells. The vertices with the acute rhombic face angles have 6 cells.

The rhombic dodecahedron can be twisted on one of its hexagonal cross-sections to form a trapezo-rhombic dodecahedron, which is the cell of a somewhat similar tessellation, the Voronoi diagram of hexagonal close-packing.

The honeycomb can be derived from an alternate cube tessellation by augmenting each face of each cube with a pyramid.

The view from inside the rhombic dodecahedral honeycomb.


The tiling's cells can be 4-colored in square layers of 2 colors each, such that two cells of the same color touch only at vertices; or they can be 6-colored in hexagonal layers of 3 colors each, such that same-colored cells have no contact at all.

4-coloring 6-coloring
Alternate square layers of yellow/blue and red/green Alternate hexagonal layers of red/green/blue and magenta/yellow/cyan

Related honeycombs[edit]

The rhombic dodecahedral honeycomb can be dissected into a trigonal trapezohedral honeycomb with each rhombic dodecahedron dissected into 4 trigonal trapezohedrons. Each rhombic dodecahedra can also be dissected with a center point into 12 rhombic pyramids of the rhombic pyramidal honeycomb.

Trapezo-rhombic dodecahedral honeycomb[edit]

Trapezo-rhombic dodecahedral honeycomb
Type convex uniform honeycomb dual
Cell type trapezo-rhombic dodecahedron VG3.4.3.4
Face types rhombus,
Symmetry group P63/mmc
Dual gyrated tetrahedral-octahedral honeycomb
Properties edge-uniform, face-uniform, cell-uniform

The trapezo-rhombic dodecahedral honeycomb is a space-filling tessellation (or honeycomb) in Euclidean 3-space. It consists of copies of a single cell, the trapezo-rhombic dodecahedron. It is similar to the higher symmetric rhombic dodecahedral honeycomb which has all 12 faces as rhombi.

Related honeycombs[edit]

It is a dual to the vertex-transitive gyrated tetrahedral-octahedral honeycomb.

Rhombic pyramidal honeycomb[edit]

Rhombic pyramidal honeycomb
(No image)
Type Dual uniform honeycomb
Coxeter-Dynkin diagrams
rhombic pyramid
Faces Rhombus
Coxeter groups [4,31,1],
Symmetry group Fm3m (225)
vertex figures
, ,
Dual Cantic cubic honeycomb
Properties Cell-transitive

The rhombic pyramidal honeycomb or half oblate octahedrille is a uniform space-filling tessellation (or honeycomb) in Euclidean 3-space.

This honeycomb can be seen as a rhombic dodecahedral honeycomb, with the rhombic dodecahedra dissected with its center into 12 rhombic pyramids.

rhombic dodecahedral honeycomb

Rhombohedral dissection

Within a cube

Related honeycombs[edit]

It is dual to the cantic cubic honeycomb:

See also[edit]


  • Williams, Robert (1979). The Geometrical Foundation of Natural Structure: A Source Book of Design. Dover Publications, Inc. p. 168. ISBN 0-486-23729-X.

External links[edit]