Manufactured in the 1950s or 60s these models were most likely created by an academic at the Faculty of Science at The University of Melbourne. The metal frames encasing each structure reflect the external crystal â€˜habitâ€™ or shape. Three models are presented – Diamond, Graphite and Zincblende. Carbon (chemical formula C) is represented by the black spheres and configured as a cubic structure. Diamond has a face centred cubic structure where each carbon is surrounded by four other carbon atoms. Graphite is layered and has a planar structure. Zincblende (ZnS) atoms are arranged in cubic close packing â€“ the same packing occurs in diamond.
Image: Courtesy of the artist