Structure and Bonding:  More About Solids

Examine the structure of fullerene, C60, given below.   Does this structure have any similarity to diamond or graphite (see Crystalline Solids activity)?

Rotate the structure and notice that there two different polygons present in the C60 molecule.  What are the two polygons?

What is the geometry of the carbon atoms in the C60 molecule?

Right click on each image and go to select, then to mouse click action, and click on distance.  This will allow you to determine the bond distance or length by clicking on the two atoms that form the bond.  Watch the lower left corner of your browser screen for the results. 

Make C-C bond length measurements around the five-membered rings and the six-membered rings.  This distance x 100 will give you picometers. 

Five-membered ring Six-membered ring
1 1
2 2
3 3
4 4
5 5

Is the bonding in the six-membered rings similar to the bonding in graphite?  Explain. 

Now examine the structure of ice or solid water.  Does this structure have any similarity to diamond or graphite?  This is the structure found in the ice cubes of your freezer.  It has a density of 0.92 g/cm3.  

What intermolecular force is holding the water molecules in the solid structure?

The image below is the structure of ice in a high pressure form.  This form of ice is called ice II and it has a density of 1.18 g/cm3.  How has the structure been modified?

The ice II structure is compacted due to the pressure and hence, the density is greater than normal ice.  Will ice II float or sink in liquid water?  Why?

Return to Structure and Bonding Homepage.