30 August, 2010

Sphere packing

Say you want to pack a volume with uniform solid spheres. Intuitively, I'd say that as sphere size decreases to 0, the packing density would increase to infinity. This is wrong! The highest packing density is about 74%, regardless of sphere size! That's interesting. It turns out, you need spheres of different sizes to reach full density. The more sizes, the higher the density.

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