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# Symmetry in 3-dimensions

• Concepts similar to 2-d but taken to a higher
dimension
• Solid object classified in terms of collection of
symmetry elements
• Combination of allowed symmetry elements called
the general three-dimensional point group
• Many symmetry elements from 2-d also applicable
in 3-d
• Rotation axes are same but mirror lines become
mirror planes

Centre of symmetry
• Mirror operator represented as and drawn as a straight line

• Center of symmetry or
inversion center more
important in 3-d
compared to 2-d
• An object will have a
center of symmetry at
(0, 0, 0) if any point at
is accompanied by an
equivalent point at
• Center of symmetry
inverts an object so that
a lower face becomes an
upper face and vice
versa

Symmetry in 3-dimensions • Mirror symmetry operator changes the handedness or ‘chirality’ of the object • Chiral species – those that cannot be superimposed • Molecules on or crystals that display handedness are their mirror termed images enantiomorphs or enantiomorphic pairs • Enantiomorphs are structurally identical and their chemical and physical properties are also identical – display additional property of optical activity and biological activity .

• A left handed object will be taken to its right handed form by the operation.4. Axes of inversion:  • rotoinversion Inversion axis () • Rotates a point/object and then inverts it in one go.2.6 .fold rotations (crystallographic) • Axes also called improper rotation axes • Symmetry operation of an improper rotation axis – rotoinversion • Two solid object related by rotoinversion are found to be enantiomorphs . • 1.3.

Axes of inversion: 2 fold ()  • Two-fold improper rotation axis: • Initial atom position rotated by (360/2)° • Then inverted through the center of symmetry • Operation identical to that of a mirror plane .

Axes of inversion:  • Operation of illustrated using a regular octahedron • Three-fold inversion axes runs through the middle of each opposite pair of triangular faces tereographic projections (stereograms) Red solid circles: Projections from above (upper crystal faces). Red open circles: Projections from below (Lower crystal faces).  .

Stereographic Projections • Way of representing 3-D crystal on 2-D paper .

Stereographic Projections • Way of representing 3-D crystal on 2-D paper .

Red open circles: Projections from below (Lower crystal faces).  .   Axes of inversion:  • Operation of illustrated using a regular octahedron • Three-fold inversion axes runs through the middle of each opposite pair of triangular faces tereographic projections (stereograms) Red solid circles: Projections from above (upper crystal faces).

Red open circles: Projections from below (Lower crystal faces).   Axes of inversion: • Involves rotation of the object by 90o then inverting through a center • Two faces on top and Two identical faces upside down on the bottom tereographic projections (stereograms) Red solid circles: Projections from above (upper crystal faces).  .

Red open circle centered with a red perpendicular to dot: Two coinciding projections. axis Red open circles: Lower crystal faces. one a mirror plane from above and one from below .  Axes of inversion: • involves   rotating the object by 60o and inverting through a center • Identical to having the combination of a 3-fold rotation Red solid circles: Upper crystal faces.

Stereographic projections of Rotoinversion .

Axes of inversion:  • Inversion axis () rotoreflection • Rotation combined with reflection • Two-fold improper rotation axis • Initial position rotated by (360/2)° • Then reflected across a mirror perpendicular to the axis • The point where the mirror plane intersects the rotoreflection axis is the center of symmetry .

Correspondence of rotoreflection and rotoinversion axes .

the two symbols are separated by “/” – Eg. . list all the symmetry elements and order them based on a set of rules • Places in the point group symbol refer to directions • The first place (primary position) given to the most important or defining symmetry element • Symmetry axes taken as parallel to direction described and mirrors are perpendicular • If a symmetry axis and the normal to a symmetry plane are parallel.diad axis perpendicular to the mirror plane . Hermann-Mauguin symbols for point groups  • All symmetry operators that characterize a point group collected together into a point group symbol • To determine the point group of an object.

3. . =m 5.6) are cyclic/rotational groups. groups (n = 4. Each component of a point group is supposed to refer a direction of its own 2. 4. are rotoinversion axes. 6m) 7. Hermann-Mauguin symbols for point groups  1.g. n2 or (n22) groups denote n-fold as principal axis. n groups (n = 1. nm (nmm) groups are the symbols of system containing one or more mirror planes containing the principal axis (2mm.2. m groups is for mirror plane. 4mm. where =center of symmetry. 6. 3m.4. Second digit refers to an axis normal to the first and the third digit refers to the diagonal 2-fold axis. group are the n-fold axes with mirror plane normal to them e. (principal axis) 3. 6) denote n fold axis with mirror plane normal to it and two mirror planes parallel to it (short notation = ) 8. The position of m indicates the direction of the normal to the mirror plane.

Hermann-Mauguin symbols for point groups .

Hint: Has 4-fold rotoinversion. vertical axis is of different length). 3 fold rotational symmetry and mirror planes normal to the two vertices .Hermann-Mauguin symbols for point groups Tetrahedron Tetragonal crystal system: (4 equilateral triangles) Three mutually perpendicular axes (two horizontal axes are of equal length.

diad axis and mirror planes normal to the symmetry axis .Hermann-Mauguin symbols for point groups Cube Octahedr on Hint: Has tetrad rotational symmetry. 3 fold rotoinversion symmetry.

Hermann-Mauguin symbols for point groups Icosahedr Dodecahe on dron or or .