This challenging kit illustrates the complete lattice atom structure. Students see the van der Waal's forces and how they permit the layers to easily slide over one another. The model shows graphite, a form of crystalline carbon, as a layered structure composed of a 2-dimensional network of atoms. Each carbon is surrounded by three others in a plane. This is different than the diamond which has four carbon atoms arranged in a tetrahedron.‚
Teachers can make an actual comparison to a diamond crystal (LAB-AIDS‚® No. 501) to show how a difference in the bonding affects the physical properties of the two substances. The skeletal "lattice" provides a sense of depth giving a real impression of a solid. The graphite crystal model makes it possible to see the entire concept: atoms, unit cells, cleavage planes and the geometry of bonds.‚
When completely assembled, the model is large enough for everyone in the classroom to see. the bonds and "forces" are composed of a flexible plastic, making it easy to take the model apart for reuse and storage.