In these lessons, we will look at using nets to calculate the surface area of a cube, rectangular prism or cuboid, triangular prism, cylinder, pyramid and cone.
The following diagrams show the nets of rectangular prism, pyramid, cylinder and cone. Scroll down the page for more examples and solutions.
A net is a pattern made when the surface of a three-dimensional figure or solid is laid out flat showing each face of the figure. It is then possible to use the net to calculate the surface area of the solid.
A cube is a three-dimensional figure with six matching square faces.
The following nets can be folded along the dotted lines to form a cube.
For example, if the length of one side of the cube 3 units then the area of one its face is 3 × 3 = 9 units2. From the net, we can see that there are six equal faces and so we get the total surface area is 6 × 9 = 54 units2.
A rectangular prism or cuboid is formed by folding a net as shown:
We can see from the net that there are two rectangles with dimensions 3 cm by 6 cm, two rectangles with dimensions 2 cm by 6 cm and two rectangles with dimensions 2 cm by 3 cm. The total surface area is then
2 × 3 × 6 + 2 × 2 × 6 + 2 × 2 × 3 = 72 cm2
How to find the surface area of a rectangular prism when its net is given?
How to find the surface area of a rectangular prism using nets?
How to find the surface area of a triangular prism using nets?
How to calculate the surface area of a triangular prism by first drawing a net for the prism?
How to find the surface area of a cylinder by drawing the net?
How to find the surface area of a pyramid and a cylinder by drawing the nets?
How to find the surface area of a hexagonal prism by drawing a net?
How to find the surface area and volume of a right circular cone?
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