All atom representations:

All atoms rep.

The rendering of a given molecular structure can be tuned by modifying two parameters: the van der Waals (VdW) radius and the so-called 'shrink factor'. A third parameter is used implicitly: the distance between atoms.

The figure above depicts HyperBalls representations of a bucky ball (C60 fullerene) evolving as a function of these parameters, ranging from a VdW to a licorice-like representation. The HyperBalls representation enables a smooth transition from one representation to another and unifies them in a single algebraic equation.

Our method performs equally well for the visualization of very large macromolecular systems. For example, with the Nvidia GTX 480 card (a good gamer graphics card), it is possible to smoothly display molecules bigger than 550,000 atoms (see the virus model on the right) with a frame rate superior to 30 fps.

More images are available in the Screenshots section.