Computational chemistry

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A molecular mechanics potential energy function, and it is used by programs like Folding@Home to simulate how molecules move and behave.

Computational chemistry is a type of chemistry that uses computer science to help solve chemical problems. These programs help scientists learn about molecules and solids. Computational chemistry is often used with chemical experiments to get more information. It can predict chemical phenomena that have not yet been seen. It is widely used to design new drugs and materials.

Computational chemistry can predict the structure of molecules. It can help find where a molecule's atoms are. It can also find absolute and relative (interaction) energies, electronic charge distributions, dipoles and higher multipole moments, vibrational frequencies, reactivity or other spectroscopic quantities, and cross sections for collision with other particles.

Computational chemistry looks at both static and dynamic systems. In all cases, as the size of the system being studied grows, the computer time and other resources (such as memory and disk space) used also grows. That system can be a single molecule, a group of molecules, or a solid. Computational chemistry methods range from highly accurate to very approximate. Highly accurate methods are typically only for small systems.

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