By David Moore
Constructor Magazine (September 2002)
|Pantheon Rome (Photo credit: Wikipedia)|
In my research on this magnificent structure, I quickly discovered that it is unique in many ways. The architect designed the structure so that it would fully enclose an imaginary sphere, 143 feet (43.3 m) in diameter. It is amazing to think of the mathematics required to locate the construction points on the inside of this ball-like structure. As for size, the clear span of the dome of St. Peter’s Basilica in Vatican City, built some 1,500 years later, fell five feet short of the Pantheon’s. In fact, the clear span of the dome was not substantially surpassed until the adoption of steel and reinforced concrete in the modern era.