Comparison of rigid and flexible simple point charge water models at supercritical conditions

Tahmid I. Mizan, Phillip E. Savage, Robert M. Ziff

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

55 Scopus citations


This study investigates the differences between the predictions of various properties of rigid and flexible simple point charge water models at supercritical conditions. Molecular dynamics simulations were conducted for supercritical water in a temperature range of 773-1073 K and densities in the range 115-659 kg/m3. We present thermodynamic data, pair correlation functions, selfdiffusivity, power spectra, dielectric constants, and variaous measures of hydrogen bonding at different state conditions. The flexible water model performs better in predicting the pressures along the supercritical isotherms simulated. Agreement between experimental and calculated dielectric constants is superior for the flexible water model, particularly at high densities. The flexible model exhibits a greater degree of hydrogen bonding and more persistent hydrogen bonds than does the rigid model. The structural features of supercritical water at high densities are identical for the two water models. At low densities, however, the flexible potential exhibits pair correlation functions with enhanced peaks. Inclusion of flexibility in the potential model does not result in a significant shift in the position of the rotationol/librational peak in the power spectrum. The self-diffusivities obtained from the simulations are within the accuracy of the experimental values for both the rigid and flexible models. On balance the inclusion of flexibility improves agreement with the properties of real supercritical water while incurring little or no additional computational burden.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1757-1770
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Computational Chemistry
Issue number15
StatePublished - Nov 30 1996

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Computational Mathematics


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