Tag Archives: space groups

Space Group Diagrams (not only) for Lecturers

I’ve started another ‘230 project’.

This time it is concerned with space group diagrams.

Of course, the No. 1 source for such diagrams, i.e. symmetry element and general position diagrams, is Volume A of the International Tables for Crystallography (ITA). As valuable as they are for the daily life of a crystallographer, they are unsuitable when it comes to teaching.

Hitherto, there is another extremely valuable online resource for these diagrams:

The Hypertext Book of Crystallographic Space Group Diagrams and Tables

However, one of the features I don’t like about these diagrams is that they decided to present both diagrams (symmetry elements and general positions) in a superimposed fashion.

For this reason I decided to draw all diagrams again and to make them publicly available (CC license) in various formats (as a PNG picture, a PDF, and a PPT file) – ready for use for teaching purposes.

However, there will be limitations. Different origin choices will be taken into account, but further different settings will be disregarded. And I do not know, if I will be able to manage the drawings of all diagrams for the cubic space groups. Lets see 🙂

Up to now, the first two space groups of the triclinic crystal system are ready. Until the end of the month the diagrams for all monoclinic space groups should be available. Then further diagrams will be added from time to time.

Have fun!


The Space Group List Project as a Poster

The Space group list project ‘230’ – a collection of examples containing at least one crystal structure for all of the 230 space groups – is now available as a synoptical poster (size DIN A0, 84.1 x 118.9 mm):


Feel free to download and share the PDF!

If you print the poster on canvas you may use it also as a special shower curtain 😉




Example – [Cr(NH3)6][CuCl5]

The structure of hexaamminechromium(III) pentachlorocuprate(II), [Cr(NH3)6][CuCl5]

Raymond, K.N.; Meek, D.W.; Ibers, J.A.
Inorganic Chemistry (1968) 7, p1111-p1117





Cu (pink)
Cr (dark blue)
N (blue)
Cl (green)
H (white)


3D rotatable model of [Cr(NH3)6][CuCl5]




Example – Zeolite-LTA-frame, Na92(Al92Si100O384)

The structure of dehydrated Na zeolite A (Si/Al=1.09) by neutron profile refinement

Adams, J.M.; Haselden, D.A.; Hewat, A.W.
Journal of Solid State Chemistry (1982) 44, p245-p253





Si (orange)
O (red)
Al (blue)
Na (green)


3D rotatable model of Zeolite LTA




Example – (NH4)[(Mo12O36)(AsO4)Mo(MoO)]

Hydrothermal synthesis, structure characterization and catalytic property of a new 1-D chain built on bi-capped Keggin type mix-valence molybdenum compound: (NH4)(Mo(VI)6Mo(V)6O36(As(V)O4)Mo(V)(Mo(V)O))

Mei Hua; Yan Dawei; Chen Qi; Xu Yan; Sun Qi
Inorganica Chimica Acta (2010) 363, p2265-p2268



bi-capped Keggin type mix-valence molybdenum compound


As (green)
Mo (rosy-silver)
N (blue)
O (red)


3D rotatable model of (NH4)[(Mo12O36)(AsO4)Mo(MoO)]




Example – V6SnSi

Investigation of the structure and the properties of alloys of the system V3Si – V3Sn

Savitskii, E.M.; Baron, V.V.; Efimov, Yu.V.; Gladyshevskii, E.I.
Inorganic Materials (1965) 1, (2) p191-p192




VSn4/VSi4 tetrahedra (red)
Si/Sn (yellow/rosy-silver)


3D rotatable model of V6SnSi