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This paper details a scheme for producing display images of atomic models. The scheme relies on a combination of a restricted atomic model, specialized sorting for visibility, and dedicated hardware to produce icons. Building such an imaging device became possible due to sharply decreasing costs of off-the-shelf memory chips and related support hardware. The device is a test bed for understanding the display procedure necessary for this task;insight gained from operation of the device is leading to guides for a reimplementation in dedicated bit-slice technology and specialized VLSI devices.