 x Circumscribed sphere Encyclopedia
In geometry
Geometry
Geometry arose as the field of knowledge dealing with spatial relationships. Geometry was one of the two fields of pre-modern mathematics, the other being the study of numbers ....

, a circumscribed sphere of a polyhedron
Polyhedron
In elementary geometry a polyhedron is a geometric solid in three dimensions with flat faces and straight edges...

is a sphere
Sphere
A sphere is a perfectly round geometrical object in three-dimensional space, such as the shape of a round ball. Like a circle in two dimensions, a perfect sphere is completely symmetrical around its center, with all points on the surface lying the same distance r from the center point...

that contains the polyhedron and touches each of the polyhedron's vertices. The word circumsphere is sometimes used to mean the same thing. When it exists, a circumscribed sphere need not be the smallest sphere containing the polyhedron; for instance, the tetrahedron formed by a vertex of a cube
Cube
In geometry, a cube is a three-dimensional solid object bounded by six square faces, facets or sides, with three meeting at each vertex. The cube can also be called a regular hexahedron and is one of the five Platonic solids. It is a special kind of square prism, of rectangular parallelepiped and...

and its three neighbors has the same circumsphere as the cube itself, but can be contained within a smaller sphere having the three neighboring vertices on its equator.

All regular polyhedra have circumscribed spheres, but most irregular polyhedra do not have one, since in general not all vertices lie on a common sphere. It is possible to define the smallest containing sphere for such shapes.

The radius of sphere circumscribed around a polyhedron P is called the circumradius of P.

The circumscribed sphere is the three-dimensional analogue of the circumscribed circle. 