App-Free Method for Visualization of Polymers in 3D and Augmented Reality

H Roshandel and M Shammami and SY Lin and YP Wong and PL Diaconescu, JOURNAL OF CHEMICAL EDUCATION, 100, 2039-2044 (2023).

DOI: 10.1021/acs.jchemed.2c01131

The rise of virtual and online education in recent years has led to the development and popularization of many online tools, notably three- dimensional (3D) models and augmented reality (AR), for visualizing various structures in chemical sciences. The majority of the developed tools focus on either small molecules or biological systems, as information regarding their structure can be easily accessed from online databases or obtained through relatively quick calculations. As such, due to a lack of crystallographic and theoretical data available for nonbiological macromolecules, there is a noticeable lack of accessible online tools for the visualization of polymers in 3D. Herein, using a few sample polymers, we showcase a workflow for the generation of 3D models using molecular dynamics and Blender. The 3D structures can then be hosted on, where AR models can be generated automatically. Furthermore, the hosted 3D models can then be shared via quick response (QR) codes and used in various settings without the need to download any applications.

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