TCB Publications - Abstract

Rob Phillips, Markus Dittrich, and Klaus Schulten. Quasicontinuum representations of atomic-scale mechanics: From proteins to dislocations. Annual Review of Materials Research, 32:219-233, 2002.

PHIL2002 Computation is one of the centerpieces of both the physical and biological sciences. One key thrust in computational science is the explicit mechanistic simulation of the spatiotemporal evolution of materials ranging from macromolecules to inter metallic alloys. On the other hand, our ability to simulate such systems is in the end always limited in both the spatial extent of the systems that are considered as well as the duration of the time that can be simulated. As a result, a variety of efforts have been put forth which aim to finesse these challenges in both space and time through new techniques in which constraint is exploited to reduce the overall computational burden. The aim of this article is to describe in general terms some of the key ideas that have been set forth in both the materials and biological setting and to speculate on future developments along these lines. To that end, we begin by developing general ideas on the exploitation of constraint as a systematic tool for degree of freedom thinning. These ideas are then applied to case studies ranging from the plastic deformation of solids to the interactions of proteins and DNA.

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