CLIVE FREEMAN / BIOSYM TECHNOLOGIES / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY CLIVE FREEMAN / BIOSYM TECHNOLOGIES / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Computer graphics ball & spoke representation of the structure of the giant fullerene C540, a novel form of pure carbon. The family of hollow spheroid fullerene molecules ("Buckyballs") was first described by Huffman et al in 1990. The archetype, C60 (Buckminsterfullerene) has 60 carbon atoms packed in an icosahedral pattern of 20 hexagons similar to that of a panelled football. Other so-called giant fullerenes include C240 & C960. Their collective name derives from that of Richard Buckminster Fuller, the architect who utilised icosahedral geometry in the design of geodesic domes.
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