How do you find surface area?

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Surface area is the sum total of all of the surfaces of a solid three dimensional geometric shape.  For a cube, the calculation is simple.  The surface of a cube is composed of six squares (four sides, a top, and a bottom) each with sides labelled s.  The area of one square is s*s or s^2.  So multiply this by 6 to get the surface area of the cube (6s^2).  The surface area of a sphere is 4pi*r^2.  The surface area of a cylinder is 2pi*r(h+r).  So you can see that the formula to find the surface area greatly depends on the specific geometry of the shape you are dealing with.

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