ADVANTAGES

The "Nuclear Spheres" were just tinkertoy-type balls and sticks that could be joined together to make 3-d representations of molecules. In such a ball-and-stick model, each atom is represented by a ball, and chemical (usually covalent) bonds are represented by rods. Each ball is drilled with multiple holes, placed so that the rods can match the atom's bonding patterns typically seen in chemical compounds. Thus, for example, a sphere representing a carbon atom will have at least four holes directed towards the vertices of a tetrahedron, separated by angles of about 109 degrees. Ball-and-stick models clearly display the relative positions of the atoms and the chemical bonds between them. The photograph below (far left) shows a methane model constructed by Hoffmann in 1865. We have been fortunate to obtain a copy of the for making molecular models from the Atomic Energy Kit. We have scanned this document and make it available to you at no charge.

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