3D Science

Monday, August 09, 2004

Geology, Geography, Astronomy - Globes

A globe - a three dimensional model of the Earth we live on - is an invaluable asset to so many subjects. Geography, cultural studies, current affairs, Astronomy, Geology ... Yet they are also quite an expensive item for a quality product. As a famous starship captain said "I want options!" and options you have ...

Downloadable for A4 (European/Japanese) and US letter the Canon 3D Papercraft - Globe is a great model that not only shows the continents and oceans but the interior of the Earths core as well!

If you are looking for something simpler try the other simple Globe from the Canon site. Much simpler to put together, it even has a tiny moon to the same scale! Don't let the simplicity of the construction fool you though - this is an excellent demonstration model for astronomy especially.

Continuing with the Geological theme, the USGS has a Tectonic Plate Globe. This one is half-way in between the two Canon Globes utilising the more traditional "vertical gores" to create a curved surface. This particular model is made easier by using a tennis ball as a base! This is also available from the Tau Rho Alpha site.

Why stop at a globe of the Earth? No discussion of Globes available on the internet would be complete with mentioning Mitchell Charitys' definitive website "Making globes of the planets" which not only has links to globes of all the planets and many of the moons, but is a goldmine on globemaking in general. One of the major links from here is to the USGS Maps & Globes Gallery. An honourable mention should go as well to the Japanese kansoku crafts website which has a Saturn and ring!

Of course, as we saw from the simple Canon Globe, a good idea of what we are trying to convey can be made without actually having to use a spherical shape - very hard for 2 dimensional paper to do accuately at the best of times! You could try the colourful hypergami globe or the Papera Arto site - Is this in Esperanto and Japanese? The Justsystem might be in Japanese but the photo instructions make it very easy to follow.

Why not use icosahedrons - 20-sided polyhedrons? Sounds complex but as you can see from Calvin J. Hamiltons' website, they are actually just equilateral triangles! ... once again you can build a whole solar system! ... Or you could try the 26 sided globes on the website of the ISAS (the Japanese Space Authority). They have Earth, Mars and Venus. The NASDA Moon Station has a series of Polyhedron globes of the solar system as well.

By the way - if you want to make some of the models but the instructions might be in a language that is foreign to you, try one of the Language conversion websites, such as Altavista Babelfish


  • If you have a game, especially a space based game, why not use the geometrically shaped globe Dice at http://www.dicecollector.com/MY_PAPER.HTM

    By Blogger Kirok of L'Stok, at 9:42 PM  

  • This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    By Blogger Kirok of L'Stok, at 9:50 PM  

  • Just to show that Science and Art can mix, check Jon Leslie's amazing Orrery... and yes, most of it is paper! For details see Jon's post on the Papermodels SmartGroup dated 10/02/05
    [Sorry, the links didn't work when I originally posted this comment]

    By Blogger Kirok of L'Stok, at 10:00 PM  

  • I noticed that there are three "soccer ball" type globes created by JAXA, the Japanese Space Agency. Two show the globe using data from the AMSR-E satellite, one a colour composite showing water, clouds, ice etc. and the other colour coded to show the sea's surface temperature. The last appears to be a true colour globe created from ADEOS / OCTS images.

    By Blogger Kirok of L'Stok, at 1:23 PM  

  • Are there modells who have a relative size like in real that means earth and Mars have in real a different size also in the modells?
    Thank for a reply also directly to me
    macgerd at t-online.de

    By Blogger Hurlebaus, at 2:23 AM  

  • You mean globes that are in scale to each other? There is none made specifically for this, but you could print one globe - say the Mars globe - smaller using the print properties. You could use this handy size calculator to work out the relative sizes that globes would have to be to be in scale to each other. Using this, to get an Earth globe 100mm dia, the sun would have to be 10934mm (enter this in the metric box for the Sun) and Mars would be 53.1mm. I'd check those figures, it would an interesting excercise in mathematics to work this out. Let us know how you go on - Good luck!

    By Blogger Kirok of L'Stok, at 10:33 AM  

  • Sorry the link for that calculator was from the Nine Planets website, which took me to the Exploratorium website.
    I ran an outing with the Starship Bronzewing once, where we used the observatory dome at the University of Western Sydney as the Sun and I had different sized balls for the planets and we paced out the relative position of the planets.
    Needless to say we didn't get past Mars!

    By Blogger Kirok of L'Stok, at 10:43 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home