Molecular-based analysis of nanoparticle solvation: Classical density functional approach
G Chuev and M Dinpajooh and M Valiev, JOURNAL OF CHEMICAL PHYSICS, 157, 184505 (2022).
Proper statistical mechanics understanding of nanoparticle solvation processes requires an accurate description of the molecular structure of the solvent. Achieving this goal with standard molecular dynamics (MD) simulation methods is challenging due to large length scales. An alternative approach to this problem can be formulated using classical density functional theory (cDFT), where a full configurational description of the positions of all the atoms is replaced by collective atomic site densities in the molecule. Using an example of the negatively charged silica-like system in an aqueous polar environment represented by a two-site water model, we demonstrate that cDFT can reproduce MD data at a fraction of the computational cost. An important implication of this result is the ability to understand how the solvent molecular features may affect the system's properties at the macroscopic scale. A concrete example highlighted in this work is the analysis of nanoparticle interactions with sizes of up to 100 nm in diameter. Published under an exclusive license by AIP Publishing.
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