Deconstruction of HK97 Capsid Protein Skew Geometry

Material used: Printed Vinyl

The pattern of proteins on the capsid head of a common virus called HK97 is confoundingly complex. To begin to understand the complex alternating rotations and skew geometry of the proteins on the HK97 virus capsid head, it was necessary for me to deconstruct the pattern. This series of four panels is the story of that deconstruction. It started with locating the simplest of anchor in an origami format of the icosahedron. This quickly revealed the skew geometry of the protein pattern. Ultimately, this process arrived at the hyperbolic icosahedral which approximates a Buckminster Fuller geodesic dome with all its associated efficiencies. The blue chainmail is another extraordinary feature which allows the virus to store its DNA under high pressure, easily injected into its bacterial host. The tolerance for error of this deconstruction was under 1%, because small errors on this kind of tiling multiply but, somehow, this is no challenge to the clever virus. Why would a tiny creature go to such superfluous effort to have such a complicated structure, if not to thumb its nose at us silly humans.

Read more about it on HK97 (I) Just a Dumb Virus.