Predicting solvation free energies and thermodynamics in polar solvents and mixtures using a solvation-layer interface condition
Tabrizi, Amirhossein Molavi; Goossens, Spencer; Rahimi, Ali Mehdizadeh; Knepley, Matthew; Bardhan, Jaydeep P.
We demonstrate that with two small modifications, the popular dielectric continuum model is capable of predicting, with high accuracy, ion solvation thermodynamics (Gibbs free energies, entropies, and heat capacities) in numerous polar solvents. We are also able to predict ion solvation free energies in water–co-solvent mixtures over available concentration series. The first modification to the classical dielectric Poisson model is a perturbation of the macroscopic dielectric-flux interface condition at the solute–solvent interface: we add a nonlinear function of the local electric field, giving what we have called a solvation-layer interface condition (SLIC). The second modification is including the microscopic interface potential (static potential) in our model. We show that the resulting model exhibits high accuracy without the need for fitting solute atom radii in a state-dependent fashion. Compared to experimental results in nine water–co-solvent mixtures, SLIC predicts transfer free energies to within 2.5 kJ/mol. The co-solvents include both protic and aprotic species, as well as biologically relevant denaturants such as urea and dimethylformamide. Furthermore, our results indicate that the interface potential is essential to reproduce entropies and heat capacities. These and previous tests of the SLIC model indicate that it is a promising dielectric continuum model for accurate predictions in a wide range of conditions.