Spikeys for consecutive versions of Mathematica

"Spikey" is the logo of Wolfram Research, makers of Mathematica and the Wolfram Language. In its original (Version 1) form, it is an augmented icosahedron with an augmentation height of sqrt(6)/3, not to be confused with the great stellated dodecahedron, which is a distinct solid. This gives it 60 equilateral triangular faces, making it a deltahedron. More elaborate forms of Spikey have been used for subsequent versions of Mathematica. In particular, Spikeys for Version 2 and up are based on a hyperbolic dodecahedron with embellishments rather than an augmented icosahedron (Trott 2007, Weisstein 2009).


The "classic" (Version 1) Spikey illustrated above is implemented in the Wolfram Language as PolyhedronData["MathematicaPolyhedron"].


The skeleton of the classic Spikey is the graph of the triakis icosahedron.

Spiky character

A glyph corresponding to the classic Spikey, illustrated above, is available as the character \[MathematicaIcon] in the Wolfram Language.

Origami spikey

The above image shows an origami Spikey consisting of 30 double-pocket equilateral modules (Fusè 1990, pp. 126-128).

Cross-stitch spiky

The cross-stitched Spikey shown above was created by Jennifer Peterson (pers. comm., Dec. 5, 2006).


In August 2004, R. Bell has constructed a 300-400-pound gigantic Spikey sculpture out of plywood, illustrated above (photos courtesy of Merritt Pelkey). Bell's plywood Spikey has an internal pentagonal floor, external metal strapping to hold the equilateral triangles together into the constituent tetrahedra, and internal metal strapping to hold the tetrahedra together into the final structure. Metal struts line the bottom five edges to strengthen the base and prevent the bottom tips from crushing. Assembly requires about 6 hours.

The volume of the Spikey constructed from an icosahedron with unit edge lengths is


and the surface area is


The inertia tensor is given by the diagonal matrix with diagonal elements


See also

Augmentation, Deltahedron, Echidnahedron, Great Stellated Dodecahedron, Hyperbolic Dodecahedron, Icosahedron, Rhombic Hexecontahedron

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Update a linkBell, R. "Spiky: The Temple of Archimedes."è, T. Unit Origami: Multidimensional Transformations. Tokyo: Japan Pub., 1990.Kasahara, K. "The Reversible Stellate Icosahedron." Origami Omnibus: Paper-Folding for Everyone. Tokyo: Japan Publications, pp. 234-235, 1988.Trott, M. "Making the Mathematica 6 Spikey." Wolfram Blog. May 22, 2007. Wolfram Research, Inc. "Cover Image of Mathematica 4.", E. W. "What's In the Logo? That Which We Call a Rhombic Hexecontahedron." May 19, 2009., S. "The Story of Spikey." Dec. 28, 2018.

Cite this as:

Weisstein, Eric W. "Spikey." From MathWorld--A Wolfram Web Resource.

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