Theoretical and Computational Chemistry

Click, Zoom, Explore: Interactive 3D (i-3D) Figures in Standard Manuscript PDFs



While chemistry exists in three-dimensions, it is published in two. This down-conversion results in a significant loss in information and often necessitates multiple images/figures to convey the complexity, intricacy, and beauty of a given structure. Outlined herein is a concise, straightforward method for incorporating interactive three-dimensional (i-3D) figures into manuscript pdfs. These figures can be generated from a variety of sources and allow for structures, molecular orbitals, unit cells and crystal lattices, as well as biopolymers to be published in the same information rich format as they are created and studied on our computers. These images can be seen and interacted with by anyone reading the manuscript in the standard pdf software (Adobe Reader) – and to fully appreciate this article, please read it using Adobe Reader. It is time for chemistry publications to take advantage of the digital age.


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Supplementary material

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3d in pdf SI real final
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Method 1-1
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Method 1-2
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Method 2
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Method 3
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Method 4
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Method 5
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Method 6
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wrl to 3DPDF