Problem #1695

1695.

Distinct planes $p_1,p_2,....,p_k$ intersect the interior of a cube $Q$. Let $S$ be the union of the faces of $Q$ and let $P =\bigcup_{j=1}^{k}p_{j}$. The intersection of $P$ and $S$ consists of the union of all segments joining the midpoints of every pair of edges belonging to the same face of $Q$. What is the difference between the maximum and minimum possible values of $k$?

$\textbf{(A)}\ 8\qquad\textbf{(B)}\ 12\qquad\textbf{(C)}\ 20\qquad\textbf{(D)}\ 23\qquad\textbf{(E)}\ 24$

This problem is copyrighted by the American Mathematics Competitions.

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Instructions for entering answers:

  • Reduce fractions to lowest terms and enter in the form 7/9.
  • Numbers involving pi should be written as 7pi or 7pi/3 as appropriate.
  • Square roots should be written as sqrt(3), 5sqrt(5), sqrt(3)/2, or 7sqrt(2)/3 as appropriate.
  • Exponents should be entered in the form 10^10.
  • If the problem is multiple choice, enter the appropriate (capital) letter.
  • Enter points with parentheses, like so: (4,5)
  • Complex numbers should be entered in rectangular form unless otherwise specified, like so: 3+4i. If there is no real component, enter only the imaginary component (i.e. 2i, NOT 0+2i).

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