We consider the geometries of hypothetical structures, derived from a graphite net by the inclusion of rings of seven or eight bonds, which may be periodic in three dimensions. Just as the positive curvature of fullerene sheets is produced by the presence of pentagons, so negative curvature appears with a mean ring size of more than six. These structures are based on coverings of periodic minimal surfaces, and surfaces parallel to these, which are known as exactly defined mathematical objects. In the same way that the cylindrical and conical structures can be generated (geometrically) by curving flat sheets so that the perimeter of a ring can be identified with a vector in the two-dimensional planar lattice, so these structures can be related to tessellations of the hyperbolic plane. The geometry of transformations at constant curvature relates various surfaces. Some of the proposed structures, which are reviewed here, promise to have lower energies than those of the convex fullerenes.

http://dx.doi.org/10.1098/rsta.1993.0045