Catenary Curves

Catenary curves are formed when a homogeneous cable is suspended by its endpoints. The word catenary is derived from the Latin word for "chain." The mathematics of the curves are described by a hyperbolic function.

Catenary curves can also be seen in lots of structures.

spider web

Spider web

hanging chain

Hanging chain

St Louis Arch

St. Louis Arch


Tarptent ridgelines are true catenary curves. This design element gives Tarptents exceptional strength, sag resistance, and wind-shedding ability.

Virga catenary

Tarptent Virga