Rectangular Prism Definition

Rectangular Prism is a solid three-dimensional shape having 12 edges and 6 faces in a rectangular shape. It is a particular shape that is read in Geometry deeply because of its deep roots in real life.


Read about Axis in Geometry in detail here.


Because of its cross-section along the length, it is termed a prism. This cross-section is the same along the lengths of the entire shape. It is also called “Cuboid” because of its similarity with such shapes.

Examples of Rectangular Prism in Daily Life

This type of prism is the most common type even used in our daily lives. You are seeing multiple objects around you with this shape but don’t know about them. Here we have some of the most common examples of cuboids around you.

  • A Pencil Box
  • A book
  • Your Room
  • Tissue Box

Properties of Rectangular Prism

  • This prism has 12 sides, 8 vertices, and 6 faces.
  • Opposite faces are equal.
  • It has three dimensions i.e., length, width, and height.
  • It is exactly similar to a cuboid with all faces and sides similar.

Two Major Types

Rectangular prisms have two major types that we are going to discuss here.

  • Right Rectangular Prism: A prism with 6 rectangular faces and right angles. It has rectangular bases that keep them aligned.
  • Oblique Rectangular Prism: It is a prism with a non-rectangular basis or not perpendicular to each other.

Formulas Related to this Prism

A rectangular prism can be solved using two different formulas. You can find the surface area and volume of the prism using the following formulas.

The volume of the Cuboid = Length x Width x Height

It has cubic units because the three lengths are multiplied by each other.

Surface Area of Cuboid = 2 [(Length x Height) + (Width x Height) + (Length x Width)]

It has square units because the surface area is measured in square units.


Find the Volume and surface area of the rectangular prism having length = 5 cm, width = 8 cm, and height = 16 cm.


Let us first show you how to calculate the volume of the prism.
As we know:

Volume = Length x Width x Height
Volume = 5 x 8 x 16
Volume = 640 cm3

Similarly, we can find Surface Area using the above-given formula.

Surface Area = 2 [(Length x Height) + (Width x Height) + (Length x Width)]
Surface Area = 2 [(80) + (128) + (40)]
Surface Area = 496 cm2


What is the difference between a right and oblique rectangular prism?

The only difference is between their shapes and angles. The number of faces and vertices are the same.

Are rectangular prism and cuboids the same?

Yes, a rectangular prism is also called a cuboid because they have the same configuration.

What is a square-face prism?

It is a type of right rectangular prism that has a square base.