This is more terminological/linguistical question than technical.

Suppose I have a periodical structure which I would describe as "chiral". See "chirality":

And a similar structure, but achiral. And say, I apply morphing to the chiral structure to make it achiral and vice versa. E.g. this image demonstrate this:

enter image description here


  • Which terms one would apply to describe "the amount, or grade, of chirality in a structure"?
  • Which terms one would apply to describe the process of "increasing/decreasing this amount of chirality"?
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Chirality is like being pregnant. Either you have it or you don't. There is no such thing as being partly chiral. The left image is not chiral, the right image is. $\endgroup$ Apr 9, 2017 at 4:28
  • $\begingroup$ @PaulSinclair funny yes. and still I need to call it somehow in a paper. amount of twist? So I must give a characteristic how 'chiral' is a structure. IOW for some taken axes of symmetry how much information reflects in itself. $\endgroup$
    – Mikhail V
    Apr 9, 2017 at 23:02
  • $\begingroup$ I was less making a joke, than trying to illustrate a point. Though I suppose if you can establish some sort of "distance" measure between images in the image space, you could grade chirality by how far it is to the nearest chiral image. $\endgroup$ Apr 10, 2017 at 4:29

1 Answer 1


Yes it is possible to measure quantitatively how a structure deviates from chirality.

It is not just "chiral" or "achiral".

Theory: see the papers cited on http://petitjeanmichel.free.fr/itoweb.petitjean.html


You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .