Monday, April 30, 2007

Advantages of beaded models

Compared with other methods for building physical models of fullerenes, the beaded molecules have many advantages:
1. The hard-sphere interactions among beads correctly mimic the microscopic valence-shell repulsion.

2. The only information needed to build a particular fullerene with a spiral is completely encoded in its spiral code.

3. The resulting shape of a beaded fullerene is in good agreement with the real geometry of the corresponding fullerene.

4. The mechanical response of a beaded molecule is related to that of a true fullerene molecule under pressure.

5. The beaded molecule can be made quite compact by using beads with small diameters. The sizes of the beaded molecules for fullerenes with even several hundreds of carbon atoms are less than 10 cm, which can be held in hand easily; while using the commercial models for the same fullerene, the sizes are typically much larger.

6. The resulting beaded molecules are aesthetically pleasing.

7. The structures of beaded molecules are stable, robust, and durable.

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