A comparison of united atom, explicit atom, and coarse-grained simulation models for poly(ethylene oxide)

Chunxia Chen, Praveen Depa, Victoria García Sakai, Janna K. Maranas, Jeffrey W. Lynn, Inmaculada Peral, John R.D. Copley

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69 Scopus citations


We compare static and dynamic properties obtained from three levels of modeling for molecular dynamics simulation of poly(ethylene oxide) (PEO). Neutron scattering data are used as a test of each model's accuracy. The three simulation models are an explicit atom (EA) model (all the hydrogens are taken into account explicitly), a united atom (UA) model (C H2 and C H3 groups are considered as a single unit), and a coarse-grained (CG) model (six united atoms are taken as one bead). All three models accurately describe the PEO static structure factor as measured by neutron diffraction. Dynamics are assessed by comparison to neutron time of flight data, which follow self-motion of protons. Hydrogen atom motion from the EA model and carbon/oxygen atom motion from the UA model closely follow the experimental hydrogen motion, while hydrogen atoms reinserted in the UA model are too fast. The EA and UA models provide a good description of the orientation properties of C-H vectors measured by nuclear magnetic resonance experiments. Although dynamic observables in the CG model are in excellent agreement with their united atom counterparts, they cannot be compared to neutron data because the time after which the CG model is valid is greater than the neutron decay times.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number234901
JournalJournal of Chemical Physics
Issue number23
StatePublished - Jun 21 2006

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Physics and Astronomy(all)
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry


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