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Staircases in a Cube (Posted on 2017-03-10) Difficulty: 3 of 5
The figure below resembles a staircase, so call it a staircase polyomino. (This instance is size 5)
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Give a staircase polyomino unit thickness to form a solid. It is trivial to pack n of the size-n staircase polyominos into a nxnxn cube.

Prove or provide a counterexample to the statement: It is impossible to pack n+1 of the size-n polyominos into a nxnxn cube.

No Solution Yet Submitted by Brian Smith    
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Some Thoughts Easiest CEs Comment 1 of 1
n=1
The staircase is just a 1x1x1 cube and you clearly can't pack 2 of them in a 1x1x1 cube.

n=2
The volume of the 3 staircases is 9, but the 2x2x2 cube has volume 8.

n=3 probably won't work either.

I suppose the statement should have ended with "for any n."  
Then one can try to find a value for which it does work.

  Posted by Jer on 2017-03-10 11:58:09
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