What is a Geodesic Dome?
A geodesic dome is hard to miss. The structure is shaped like a partial sphere and it's made up of interlocking pyramid shapes called tetrahedrons. Lightweight, yet extremely strong and stable, the geodesic Dome uses less material to cover more space than any other structure ever built.
A Man Ahead of His Time
The man who patented the geodesic dome was Buckminster Fuller, an American engineer and inventor. In the 1950s, he designed the geodesic dome in an effort to provide low-cost housing. While the domes never caught on as places to live, they are used as airplane hangars, greenhouses, observatories, theaters, sports arenas, and planetarium.[spoiler title="Did You Know?"]
Before Fuller's invention, domes needed to be supported with vaults or flying buttresses.[/spoiler]
Famous Geodesic Domes
Designed by Buckminster Fuller for Expo 67, the 1967 world's fair in Montreal, Canada, the Biosphere is now a museum dedicated to the environment.
A complete sphere, Spaceship Earth is more a globe than a dome. Still, the Disney World attraction is perhaps the most famous geodesic dome ever built. It towers 180 feet high and can easily be seen for miles around.
Located in Toronto, Canada, the SkyDome, home to Toronto Blue Jays, is a geodesic dome with a retractable roof. On sunny days, the roof can open completely so players and fans can enjoy the weather. When it rains or snows, the roof closes.