In silico chemical experiments in the Age of AI: From quantum chemistry to machine learning and back

16 February 2024, Version 1


Computational chemistry is an indispensable tool for understanding molecules and predicting chemical properties. However, traditional computational methods face significant challenges due to the difficulty of solving the Schrödinger equations and the increasing computational cost with the size of the molecular system. In response, there has been a surge of interest in leveraging artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) techniques to in silico experiments. Integrating AI and ML into computational chemistry offers solutions to scalability and accelerating the exploration of chemical space. However, challenges remain, particularly regarding the reproducibility and transferability of ML models. This review highlights the evolution of ML in learning from, complementing, or replacing traditional computational chemistry for energy and property predictions. Starting from models trained entirely on numerical data, a journey set forth toward the ideal model incorporating or learning the physical laws of quantum mechanics. Through a review of existing computational methods, ML models, and their intertwining, this paper also outlines a roadmap for future research, identifying areas for improvement and innovation. Ultimately, the goal is to develop AI architectures capable of predicting accurate and transferable solutions to the Schrödinger equation, thereby revolutionizing in silico experiments within chemistry and materials science.


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