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The Chemical Educator

ISSN: 1430-4171 (electronic version)

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Abstract Volume 13 Issue 2 (2008) pp 59-60

Is There Any Connection between The da Vinci Code and the Tetrahedral Bond Angle? A Simple Geometrical Construction of the Latter

Alexandru T. Balaban* and Melanie J. Lesko

Texas A&M University at Galveston, Department of Marine Sciences, 5007 Avenue U, Galveston, TX, 77551,
Received May 18, 2007. Accepted October 1, 2007.

Published online: 20 February 2008

Abstract. A slight change in Leonardo da Vinciís Vitruvian Man drawing (by enlarging the square so that the circle is now inscribed, rather than almost-circumscribed) allows a simple construction of the tetrahedral bond angle, namely as that angle under which a diagonal of the new square is viewed from the intersection of the other diagonal with the circle.

Key Words: In the Classroom; general chemistry; covalent bonding; bond angle; stereochemistry

(*) Corresponding author. (E-mail:

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Issue date: April 1, 2008

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