Crystal Viewer Tool

Visualize different crystal lattices and planes

Launch Tool

This tool version is unpublished and cannot be run. If you would like to have this version staged, you can put a request through HUB Support.

Archive Version 2.3.3
Published on 14 Mar 2013 All versions

doi:10.4231/D3VT1GP85 cite this



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Crystal Viewer visualizes Bravais lattices, Miller planes, and crystal structures of specific materials needed for many courses in materials, electronics and chemistry. Users can also view bulk crystals for different materials (e.g. Si, GaAs, NaCl, graphene, CNTs, C60) as well as all 14 Bravais lattices. The main purpose of this educational tool is to provide insight about the crystalline structure of various materials.

For problems with this tool, please submit a support ticket (click on "Need Help?" button in upper right part of this page). To submit a wish for improvements, please click on the Wishlist tab above.

Homework : Homework material is provided to help the user understand and visualize crystal structures, leading to a better understanding of the materials and their properties.

First Time User Guide: This document provides useful information to the users who are using the tool for the first time. It explains some important details about crystallography, usage of the tool and some useful related links to find more information about crystals.

Version History:
Version 2.3.2 (Aug 2012)
  • Increased Grid size for miller plane.

Version 2.2 (May 2011)
  • Fixed for the wrong miller planes in (110) direction (cubic).

Version 2.0 (May 2011)
  • The tool has been completely overhauled. The underlying Matlab code has been replaced by the simulation engine NEMO5.
  • The nomenclature of some options has (hopefully) improved.

Version 1.3
  • New crystals like Wurtzite, Sodium Chloride have been added. Granted this wish
  • New information about bravais lattices have been included.
  • Better rearrangement of the GUI has been done.
  • New planes in material systems has been added.
  • Many small changes have been made in terms of information provided to the user.
  • Graphite planes have been corrected.

Version 1.26
  • Added atomic planes with and without dangling bonds.
  • Now Material planes are completely filled with atoms.
  • Information about crystal type in material system corrected.

Version 1.25
  • Improved the visualization of miller planes in bravais lattice systems. Wish granted.
  • Now Larger material crystal systems can be visualized with cut planes as chosen by user. Wish granted.

Version 1.24
  • CNTs can be visualized in the tool now.
  • Atoms in Bravais lattices are now bigger by default. To further adjust the atomic size use the setting tool in the rappture output.
  • Graphene atoms were too small to be seen. This has been fixed in the latest release of the tool.
  • Mixup in trigonal and tetragonal bravais lattice resolved. Also angle dependence in trigonal bravais lattice corrected.

Known Issues:
  • Certain Miller planes may look odd.
  • For some cystals there are too many bonds.

Wish List:
    See this link for an elaborate wishlist of the tool.

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NEMO 5, a code under development in the research group of Gerhard Klimeck. NEMO 5 is an open source nanoelectronics device simulator containing a variety of different material and geometry models. Features include the construction of atomistic grids of varying crystal structures, multiband Schroedinger-Poisson simulations, atomistic strain and phonon computations, quantum transport using open-boundary wavefunctions or NEGF, and user-friendly input/output.


A. Paul... Main developer of the tool up to v1.23.
X. Sun... Interface GUI-NEMO5 (>=2.0)
V. Savikhin... Miller plane visualization (<=v1.23)
S. Steiger, M. Povolotskyi, T. Kubis, H.-H. Park... NEMO 5 simulation engine (used starting from v2.0)
G. Klimeck... Management

Sponsored by

Network for Computational Nanotechnology (NCN), Purdue University


  • Kittel, Charles (1996) [1953].Introduction to Solid State Physics (Seventh Edition ed.). New York: John Wiley & Sons. pp. 10. ISBN 0-471-11181-3.

Cite this work

Researchers should cite this work as follows:

  • Saumitra Raj Mehrotra; Michael Povolotskyi; Sebastian Steiger; Tillmann Christoph Kubis; Abhijeet Paul; Xingshu Sun; Victoria Savikhin; Gerhard Klimeck (2016), "Crystal Viewer Tool," (DOI: 10.4231/D3VT1GP85).

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