Coarse grained simulation of the aggregation and structure control of polyethylene nanocrystals
2021-05-25, Flachmüller, Alexander, Mecking, Stefan, Peter, Christine
Polyethylene (PE) telechelics with carboxylate functional groups at both ends have been shown to assemble into hexagonal nanocrystal platelets with a height defined by their chain length in basic CsOH-solution. In this coarse grained (CG) simulation study we show how properties of the functional groups alter the aggregation and crystallization behavior of those telechelics. Systematic variation of the parameters of the CG model showed that important factors which control nanoparticle stability and structure are the PE chain length and the hydrophilicity and the steric demand of the head groups. To characterize the aggregation process we analyzed the number and size of the obtained aggregates as well as intramolecular order and intermolecular alignment of the polymer chains. By comparison of CG and atomistic simulation data, it could be shown that atomistic simulations representing different chemical systems can be emulated with specific, different CG parameter sets. Thus, the results from the (generic) CG simulation models can be used to explain the effect of different head groups and different counterions on the aggregation of PE telechelics and the order of the obtained nanocrystals.
Coarse-Grained Simulation of the Adsorption of Water on Au(111) Surfaces Using a Modified Stillinger–Weber Potential
2020, Ripani, Giorgio, Flachmüller, Alexander, Peter, Christine, Palleschi, Antonio
For reproducing the behavior of water molecules adsorbed on gold surfaces in terms of density of both bulk and interfacial water and in terms of structuring of water on top of gold atoms, the implementation of a multibody potential is necessary, thus the Stillinger–Weber potential was tested. The goal is using a single nonbonded potential for coarse-grained models, without the usage of explicit charges. In order to modify the angular part of the Stillinger–Weber potential from a single cosine to a piecewise function accounting for multiple equilibrium angles, employed for Au–Au–Au and Au–Au–water triplets, it is necessary to create a version of the simulation package LAMMPS that supports the assignment of multiple favored angles. This novel approach is able to reproduce the data obtained using quantum mechanical calculations and density profiles of both bulk and adsorbed water molecules obtained using classical polarizable force fields.