Research ArticleMATERIALS SCIENCE

Electronic structure at coarse-grained resolutions from supervised machine learning

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Science Advances  22 Mar 2019:
Vol. 5, no. 3, eaav1190
DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.aav1190

Abstract

Computational studies aimed at understanding conformationally dependent electronic structure in soft materials require a combination of classical and quantum-mechanical simulations, for which the sampling of conformational space can be particularly demanding. Coarse-grained (CG) models provide a means of accessing relevant time scales, but CG configurations must be back-mapped into atomistic representations to perform quantum-chemical calculations, which is computationally intensive and inconsistent with the spatial resolution of the CG models. A machine learning approach, denoted as artificial neural network electronic coarse graining (ANN-ECG), is presented here in which the conformationally dependent electronic structure of a molecule is mapped directly to CG pseudo-atom configurations. By averaging over decimated degrees of freedom, ANN-ECG accelerates simulations by eliminating backmapping and repeated quantum-chemical calculations. The approach is accurate, consistent with the CG spatial resolution, and can be used to identify computationally optimal CG resolutions.

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