A C60 buckyball is a closed carbon cage in the form of a truncated icosahedron. This model kit has 60 sp2 carbon atoms & 90 30mm bonds that form 12 pentagon & 20 hexagonal faces similar to a soccer ball. The assembled model measures 180mm (~7") across & is one of many carbon allotropes. The bonds between two hexagons are effectively conjugated double bonds. These are implied in the model but can be added.
The model measures 180mm (~7") across. Compare it to other forms of carbon such as diamond & graphite or its structural isomers such as the C70 fullerene. You can also assemble a carbon nanotube using 3 of these kits.
The buckyball may have gotten its name from Buckminster Fuller's original geodesic dome structure used for the American pavilion seen at Expo '67 in Montreal. It has been repurposed as the "Biosphere".
Modified buckyballs have many potential applications including antimicrobial & anti-tumour agents. In a delivery method called photodynamic therapy, fullerenes are excited from their ground state, typically by a laser or other light source. The excited state is cytotoxic.
Fullerenes are also very hydrophobic but adding hydrophilic chemical functional groups enhance its water solubility and aid the delivery of drugs and genes to target cells.
Metal ions trapped within fullerene cages (endohedral fullerene or metallofullerenes) have diagnostic potential. They are non-toxic & resist metabolic breakdown. If the metal is a radioisotope, it may be useful in imaging diseased organs or even kill cancer cells.
|68186-30||Wobbly bond, 30mm, each||90|
|68241C||Atom, Orbit, C "j", planar: 120-120-120, black||60|