# Earth Grids

10 11 dymaxion maps Buckminster Fullers cutout globes In the 1940s Buckminster Fuller created several world maps in his attempts to create a visually accurate, flat rendition of a spherical globe. In 1946 he patented the Dymaxion Projection based on the cubeoctahedron opposite top. A later 1954 version called The AirOcean World Map used a slightly modified icosahedron shown below. Each face of these polyhedra is a gnomonic projection displaying great circles as straight lines, and on both maps, the landmasses are accurately rendered, unlike other flat projections of the Earth which distort either shape, area, distance or directional measurements. On the Mercator world map, for instance, Greenland appears to be three times its corresponding globe size, and Antarctica appears as a long thin white strip along the bottom edge of the map. Even the popular Robinson Projection, used in many schools, shows Greenland distorted to 60 larger than its corresponding globe size. Left and above U.S Patent drawing of Buckminster Fullers dymaxion map of the Earth, published in 1946. Science Journal referred to this as the first cartographic patent to issue from the US Patents office. A finite system such as a sphere can best be matched by Platonic and Archimedian solids and Fuller chose the cubeoctahedron and icosahedron for his two projections this page and opposite respectively. Multiple rotations of the Icosahedron result in the maximum unitary subdivision of a oneradiussystem resulting in 15 great circles and 120 right spherical triangles. Fullers geometries of the Earth also became the basis of the Becker and Hagens UVG model p.20 and Bruce Cathies cubeoctahedron model p.18.