Pawn Structure

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Elke Rehder, Chain of Pawns [1]

Pawn structure is a term used to describe the positions of all the pawns on the board, ignoring all other pieces. Pawn structure encompasses a broad range of ideas, from the general shape of the pawns (such as closed or open) to specific characteristics of individual pawns.

Hashing Pawns

see main article Pawn Hash Table

Full evaluation of pawn structure might be quite expensive. To speed up the evaluation, many programs use a separate pawn hash table, addressed by a special key derived from the pawn's (and possibly also king's) position. Since pawn structure changes rather slowly, hit rate for such table is typically above 95%. Anything strictly pawn related can be stored in this hash table, including pawn shield terms to be used dynamically for king safety.

Standard Terms

Single Pawn

Groups of Pawns


Dependent on Pawn Structure

Pawn Shield
Pawn Storm

See also


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