CPK atomic coloring
In chemistry, CPK coloring is a popular color coding that is used to distinguish the different types of atoms.
Origin of the Concept
In 1952, Robert Corey and Linus Pauling published a description of space-filling models of proteins and other molecules that they had been building at Caltech. Their models represented atoms by using hardwood balls, painted in different bright colors to indicate the respective chemical elements. Their color schemes included:
- White for Hydrogen
- Red for Oxygen
- Blue for Nitrogen
- Black for Carbon
Typical color assignments
Typical CPK color assignments include:
|violet||Alkaline metals (Lithium, Sodium, Potassium, etc.)|
|gray or silver||Titanium (Ti) and most metals|
|dark red||Bromine (Br)|
|dark violet||Iodine (I)|
|cyan||Noble gases* (Helium, Neon, Argon, and Krypton, etc.)|
|dark green||Alkaline earth metals (Beryllium, Magnesium, Calcium, Strontium, etc.)|
|dark orange||Iron (Fe)|
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* Noble gases do not form compounds with other atoms.