Transition Pathway and Its Free-Energy Profile: A Protocol for Protein Folding Simulations
We present a dynamic pathway model for the formation of C(60) using the action-derived molecular dynamics simulations. We propose candidate precursors for dynamic pathway models in which carbons spontaneously aggregate due to favorable energetics and kinetics. Various planar polycyclic models are in a disadvantageous state where they cannot be trapped in the forward reaction due to their high excess internal energies. Our simulation results show that precursors either in the shape of tangled polycyclics or in the shape of open cages are kinetically favored over precursors in the shape of planar hexagonal graphite fragments. Calculated activation energies for the probable precursor models are in good agreement with experiment. Existence of chains in the models of tangled polycyclics and open cages is beneficially for the formation of C(60) molecule. Chains attached to the precursor model are energetically favorable and display lithe movements along the dynamic pathway.