These earrings are models of a carbon molecule known as a Buckyball. Buckyballs get their name from their resemblance to the famous geodesic dome designs of Buckminster Fuller. This particular molecule is made of fifty carbon atoms. Buckyballs are created naturally in flame and by lightning strikes, although most natural Buckballs are larger than these, with sixty atoms or more. Despite their natural origins, Buckyballs were unknown until 1985, when a team of chemists created and detected them in the laboratory by hitting a block of graphite with a laser. The team won the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1996 for their discovery!
These earrings are 20 mm (~3/4") long and 13 mm (1/2") across. (The real molecule is less than one nanometer across, so this model is made at about twenty million times scale!) There are no earwires in the model; earwires or studs can easily be added with a jumpring.
We have several other versions of Buckyballs in our shop too, as well as carbon nanotube pendants.