On Homogeneous, Structures and the Symmetrical Partitioning of Them, with Application to Crystals

William Barlow

Summary: The above investigation shows :— The nature of homogeneity of structure, and the properties which distinguish it from structureless homogeneity. The new definition of a homogeneous structure recently put forward by the author in Groth's Zeitschrift is given. A method of realising in a concrete form, and with great generality, the kind of repetition in space which constitutes homogeneity of structure, the models employed for this purpose each consisting of a number of similar plaster hands appropriately arranged in space. The total number of types of arrangement, all of which can be represented in this way, is 230, this being the number of typical point systems described by Fedorow and Schönflies, derived by their extension of Sohncke's methods. The various types of homogeneous structure, like the corresponding point-systems, all fall into the 32 classes of crystal symmetry. What property common to all homogeneous structures whatever most nearly coyresponds to Thomson and Tait's definition of homogeneity. Reasons for regarding as untenable the arguments put forward by Fedorow in support of his recent attempt to select from among the types of homogeneous structure those which are possible for crystals, and to determine the shapes of their ultimate units. The possibility of so classifying all conceivable ways of symmetrically partitioning all the types of homogeneous structure as to avoid all reference to the nature of the cell-faces, whether plane or otherwise, and, in other respects also, be perfectly general. Some reasons for undertaking this classification, notwithstanding its complexity, are given, the chief one being the relation of symmetrical partitioning to some stereo-chemical and other experimental facts.

Mineralogical Magazine; October 1896 v. 11; no. 51; p. 119-136; DOI: 10.1180/minmag.1896.011.51.02
© 1896, The Mineralogical Society
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