Digon
In geometry, a digon is a polygon with two sides (edges) and two vertices. Its construction is degenerate in a Euclidean plane because either the two sides would coincide or one or both would have to be curved; however, it can be easily visualised in elliptic space.
Regular digon | |
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On a circle, a digon is a tessellation with two antipodal points, and two 180° arc edges. | |
Type | Regular polygon |
Edges and vertices | 2 |
Schläfli symbol | {2} |
Coxeter diagram | |
Symmetry group | D_{2}, [2], (*2•) |
Dual polygon | Self-dual |
A regular digon has both angles equal and both sides equal and is represented by Schläfli symbol {2}. It may be constructed on a sphere as a pair of 180 degree arcs connecting antipodal points, when it forms a lune.
The digon is the simplest abstract polytope of rank 2.
A truncated digon, t{2} is a square, {4}. An alternated digon, h{2} is a monogon, {1}.
In Euclidean geometry
Any straight-sided digon is regular even though it is degenerate, because its two edges are the same length and its two angles are equal (both being zero degrees). As such, the regular digon is a constructible polygon.[1] In this sense, it can be seen as a double covering of a line segment.
The limit of a general hosohedron on the sphere may be considered to be an infinite hosohedron, a tiling of the Euclidean plane by infinitely many digons.[2] However, the vertices of these digons are at infinity and hence these digons are not bound by closed line segments. This tessellation is usually not considered to be an additional regular tessellation of the Euclidean plane, even when its dual order-2 apeirogonal tiling (infinite dihedron) is. When formed into such a tessellation, the digons do not resemble line segments, but rather appear as infinitely-long thick strips or "equals signs".
Some definitions of a polygon do not consider the digon to be a proper polygon because of its degeneracy in the Euclidean case.[3]
In elementary polyhedra
A digon as a face of a polyhedron is degenerate because it is a degenerate polygon. But sometimes it can have a useful topological existence in transforming polyhedra.
As a spherical lune
A spherical lune is a digon whose two vertices are antipodal points on the sphere.[4]
A spherical polyhedron constructed from such digons is called a hosohedron.
Theoretical significance
The digon is an important construct in the topological theory of networks such as graphs and polyhedral surfaces. Topological equivalences may be established using a process of reduction to a minimal set of polygons, without affecting the global topological characteristics such as the Euler value. The digon represents a stage in the simplification where it can be simply removed and substituted by a line segment, without affecting the overall characteristics.
The cyclic groups may be obtained as rotation symmetries of polygons: the rotational symmetries of the digon provide the group C_{2}.
See also
References
Citations
- Eric T. Eekhoff; Constructibility of Regular Polygons Archived 2015-07-14 at the Wayback Machine, Iowa State University. (retrieved 20 December 2015)
- The Symmetries of Things 2008, John H. Conway, Heidi Burgiel, Chaim Goodman-Strass, ISBN 978-1-56881-220-5, p. 263
- Coxeter (1973), Chapter 1, Polygons and Polyhedra, p.4
- Coxeter (1973), Chapter 1, Polygons and Polyhedra, pages 4 and 12.
Bibliography
- Herbert Busemann, The geometry of geodesics. New York, Academic Press, 1955
- Coxeter, Regular Polytopes (third edition), Dover Publications Inc, 1973 ISBN 0-486-61480-8
- Weisstein, Eric W. "Digon". MathWorld.
- A.B. Ivanov (2001) [1994], "Digon", in Hazewinkel, Michiel (ed.), Encyclopedia of Mathematics, Springer Science+Business Media B.V. / Kluwer Academic Publishers, ISBN 978-1-55608-010-4
External links
Look up digon in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. |
Media related to Digons at Wikimedia Commons