Icosahedrons | How Blenders IcoSpheres work

Icosahedron / Icosphere generation process Blender

For the research on my planet renderer I have been looking into how icospheres are constructed. The process is rather simple:

  1. Define the triangle edges with three intersecting planes that use the golden ratio (1+sqrt(5))/2 : 1Golden ration icospher Blender
  2. Create 20 triangles between the vertices of those planes:
    Icosahedron triangles wireframe blender icosphere
    12 vertices

    icosahedron blender icosphere triangle wireframe
    20 triangles
  3. Subdivide those triangles and keep them in the shape of a sphere by making sure the distance from the center is the radius of the sphere:
    Blender icosphere icosahedron subdivision 1
    80 triangles
    icosahedron blender icosphere subdivision
    320 triangles
    Icosahedron Blender icosphere subdivision
    1280 triangles

     

There is barely a noticable difference from how icospheres look like when adding them via the Add Mesh menu in Blender:Blender icosphere

The nice thing about icosahedrons is that they use equilateral triangles of the same scale everywhere, so they have a nicely distributed amount of surface detail, so it might be quite ideal for rendering of planets.

Author: Robert Lindner

I am a German-English Game Developer with a focus on Graphics Programming. I love finding out how things work and visualizing them in a creative way using computer technology. My interest in Computer Graphics came up when I started creating 3D art using Blender in 2008. Since I also learned programming in secondary school and tought myself digital painting, I moved to Belgium to study a Bachelor in Digital Arts and Entertainment. After a year of projects in both film and video games I started focusing on Graphics programming, as I wanted to do something that requires both logical and creative thinking.

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