We show that a set of n disjoint unit spheres inRdadmits at most two distinct geometric permutations if n≥9, and at most three if 3≤n≤8. This result improves a Helly-type theorem on line transversals for disjoint unit spheres inR3: if any subset of size at most 18 of a family of such spheres admits a line transversal, then there is a line transversal for the entire family. © 2004 Elsevier B.V.
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