Sponsored App Review: Mobile Molecular Modeling – Mo3

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Mo-cubed, as this Android app is known, is a great app for both teachers and students alike. It not only allows users to create freeform molecular structures but also predict IR, 1H-NMR, 13C-NMR, and Mass Spectra. It's a Chemical molecular app that allows for 3D structures of whichever molecules you want to be built using one of more intuitive user interfaces out there, including the ability to convert free-hand 2D drawings to 3D structures. Mo-cubed uses a semi-empirical molecular orbital method from the MOPAC2012 program to enable users to assess chemical information in 3D, making this a perfect app for quantum chemistry and beyond. Users can bring in other structures and formulae from the Pubchem database and where all is said and done, users can simply export and share their data including structure and computed properties with ease.

Despite its complicated nature, Mo-cubed is a simple download from the Play Store to get people started. It's a free app as well, which will no doubt be music to the ears of students around the world. Once it's installed, there is the option to watch a quick tutorial, which is no doubt well worth taking a look at.

Mo-Cubed 1

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I'll confess to not knowing a thing about quantum chemistry, so I decided to take a look at the included tutorial, and I'm glad that I did.

Mo-Cubed 2

Beyond that, there are also some onscreen prompts that allow users to use the app nice and easily.

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Mo-Cubed 3

Being able to create a molecular structure might be something students and professionals can do in the lab or their facility, but it's not so easy at home. Sure, you can buy a simple balls & sticks chemistry set like this, but when does it end? Build a 3D model of a molecule and that's it. With Mo-cubed, users can choose from a wide array of different elements from the periodic table, which are all color coded to build a virtual 3D model. Users can also change the chemical for each molecule whenever they want, too. Once done, Mo-cubed allows users to search for chemical information available for that molecule at the Pubchem public database or to perform quantum chemistry simulations in the cloud compute for its chemical properties. This allows users to experiment with chemistry however they want to.

Mo-Cubed 4

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As we can see in the above shot, there's a lot that people can do with Mo-cubed, especially when in the right hands. This is a great tool, and it caters to all sorts of students and professionals, including those that are more used to drawing these models freehand. With Mo-cubed, these users can have their drawings converted into 3D structures at the push of a button.

Mo-Cubed 5

Being able to create a molecular structure might be something students and professionals can do in the lab or their facility, but it's not so easy at home. Sure, you can buy a simple balls & sticks chemistry set like this, but when does it end? Build a 3D model of a molecule and that's it. With Mo-cubed, users can choose from a wide array of different elements from the periodic table, which are all color coded to build a virtual 3D model. Users can also change the chemical for each molecule whenever they want, too. Once done, Mo-cubed allows users to search for chemical information available for that molecule at the Pubchem public database or to perform quantum chemistry simulations in the cloud compute for its chemical properties. This allows users to experiment with chemistry however they want to.

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Mo-Cubed 6

When a user is finished working on their project, they can save it, export it and send it wherever they want, bringing everything together and further enabling users with a great tool for those studying or even those in research.

Mo-Cubed 7

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Mo-cubed is a great app that has a lot going for it, and while it's certainly over the head of many users – like myself – that's okay, because this is a specific app for a specific audience. To that end, Mo-cubed is a great app that has all manner of tools to offer students as well as researchers alike. Being able to do all of this from a smartphone is pretty revolutionary, even if some might feel the 3D models are fairly basic. The interface is not the best out there, either, but what matters is that everything here works and does exactly as it should do, which is more than we can say for a lot of apps out there. Free to download and use, Mo-cubed could be a great study companion and even a mini mobile lab for some professionals.

Rating

  • Speed (4/5) – Everything in Mo-cubed runs quickly, and no matter what you ask of the game, nothing takes that long to generate.
  • Theme (4/5) – Things could certainly be better in the looks department, but for the most part the 3D models look fine, and the interface is useable and not exactly offensive.
  • Features (4/5) – As a tool for learning and experimenting with chemistry, Mo-cubed has a hell of a lot on offer, and it does so without confusing users. The interface here is fairly simple to work with as well, which is great for those who might not be so hot with mobile technology.
  • Overall (4/5) – Mo-cubed has a lot to offer both students as well as professionals, and it's the sort of thing I think will help a lot of people out there. It's an excellent tool that's free and doesn't bog users down, it just lets them get on with things.

Pros

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  • Gives users the option to create free-hand drawings in 2D, as well as add pre-drawn shapes and then convert to 3D.
  • Has all the major elements and chemicals that people will be using in their 3D models on hand.
  • Allows users to save and export their projects as well as easily share them however they want.
  • Makes testing out chemistry ideas and such a real breeze without needing anything more than your smartphone.

Cons

  • Interface is easy to use, but does look and feel a little dated in the long run.

All-in-all, Mo-cubed is the sort of niche app that makes Android so great. It's easy to use and allows users the ability to test an idea out, as well as get a better idea of what a molecule looks like in 3D using just their phone. Not to mention not needing to spend any money doing it. Well worth checking out, Mo-cubed is the sort of app that could revolutionize the way students and professionals alike work on chemistry projects.