Orb Web

World’s Most Efficient Truss with Pinned Joints

The Web of Araneus combines fine art, history, geography, economics, genetics, biology, chemistry, physics, geometry, trigonometry, algebra, computer programming, statics, dynamics, kinematics, architecture, mechanical engineering, aerospace engineering, civil engineering, materials science, poetry … well, you get the idea.

"Since the number of silk fibres (each fibre is 3 µm in diameter) that constitute each radius, frame and guy is 2, 10 and 20 respectively, this approximately equilibrates stresses throughout the framework.”

S.A. Wainwright, W.D. Biggs, J.D. Currey, J.M.Gosline, Mechanical Design in Organisms, p. 353-354

A simple VBA program illustrates the flexibility of the orb web design. Note that designs with members in compression are not practical. Enjoy The Deacon's Masterpiece by Oliver Wendell Holmes.


Web of Araneus


Orb Web diagram

Internal Loads

internal loads