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What are some real-life examples of triangular prisms?

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Quick Answer

The Flatiron Building in New York City is an example of a triangular prism in real-life. This building is a well-known landmark that defines the skyline of Manhattan and was originally built as the headquarters of the Fuller Construction Company, nicknamed the Fuller Building. It was later nicknamed "Burnham's Folly" because people thought that Daniel Burnham's triangular design could not withstand strong winds. However, the building was a success.

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Full Answer

A triangular prism is a polyhedron that is formed by a triangular base, a translated copy for the other side and three sides that connect them. In addition, triangulation involves placing structural members into triangular shapes, which gives those members proper support and stability. These types of structures can support forces better without bending. Fewer members can be used, and they need not be as strong. Thus, triangulation of support members is often utilized in buildings and frames. This leads to the structural supports and overall shape of the building taking the form of triangular prisms.

In addition, according to Trend Hunter, buildings in the form of triangular prisms offer a creative way to draw attention to the building, since triangles are one of the shapes that children learn to identify early in life.

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