# Easy as pi: Astrophysicist solves riddle of Britain’s most complex crop circle

By | June 18, 2008

It is – by any calculation – a creation stunning in its ingenuity. Carved out in a barley field, this 150ft wide pattern is said to be a pictorial representation of the first ten digits of Pi, one of the most fundamental symbols in mathematics.

… He said the crop pattern ‘clearly shows’ the first ten digits of pi, which – as many will remember from their schooldays – is used to calculate the area of a circle using the formula Pi r squared.

Mr Reed said: ‘I noticed a photo of the Barbury Castle pattern. It shows a coded image representing the first ten digits of Pi – the ratio of the circumference of a circle to the diameter. ‘The tenth digit has even been correctly rounded up. – dm

Pi inside a circle in graphic form. Awesome. What is Pi, you may ask, and how does it relate to a circle?

In math, this is the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter. In other words, pi is a number that equals the quotient of the circumference of a circle divided by its diameter. Many people celebrate pi by holding a Pi Day on March 14th or 3/14. – 42x

In other words, the distance around any circle, divided by the distance across through the center will always be the same number, no matter how big or small the circle is. (Read more here.)

That magic number, which also goes by the symbol above, is Pi.

If I was an intelligent alien, this would be a perfect way to say ‘hello’ to some other intelligent species that did not speak my language. Was it made by aliens or puzzle minded humans? Here is Reed’s diagram which shows the solution: