Icosahedral carbon particles

a simple model building exercise led to the conclusion that closed large fullerenes would have quasi-icosahedral structures. This project was really an arts one in that I wanted to build a large fullerene structure really as a sculpture. Ken McKay found details of Gomberg’s icosahedra and built the beautiful models of C240 and C540. To my surprise they were not spheroidal like Buckminster Fuller’s Montréal dome but as all the curvature was focused around the pentagons and surface is essentially flat between them this resulted in an explanation of why spheroidal carbon particles have the quasi-icosahedral structures that had been observed. This is a nice example of an arts project resulting in a science breakthrough… An unusual situation – it is usually vv.  Also Ed Applewhite told me that only the top half of the Montreal dome was a BF dome.  This explained why when I visited the site a second time in the 90’s II was unable to find a pentagonal archway!

GiantModel960 new1.2 Onion 4 shell Simulation


formation of quasi-ocosahedral spiral shell carbon particles_1988 NATURE_krot

These beautiful structures were published without accreditation in a Scientific American article

Fullerenes,” Scientific American 256, 54 (October 1991).