A theoretical-computational procedure based on the quasi-Gaussian entropy (QGE) theory and molecular dynamics (MD) simulations is proposed for the calculation of thermodynamic properties for molecular and supra-molecular species in the gas phase. The peculiarity of the methodology reported in this study is its ability to construct an analytical model of all the most relevant thermodynamic properties, even within a wide temperature range, based on a practically automatic sampling of the entire conformational repertoire of highly flexible systems, thereby bypassing the need for an explicit search for all possible conformers/rotamers deemed relevant. In this respect, the reliability of the presented method mainly depends on the quality of the force field used in the MD simulations and on the ability to discriminate in a physically coherent way between semi-classical and quantum degrees of freedom. The method was tested on six model systems (n-butane, n-butane, n-octanol, octadecane, 1-butyl-3-methylimidazolium hexafluorophosphate and 1-butyl-3-methylimidazolium bis(trifluoromethylsulfonyl)imide ionic pairs), which, being experimentally characterized and already addressed by other theoretical-computational methods, were considered as particularly suitable to allow us to evaluate the method’s accuracy and efficiency, bringing out advantages and possible drawbacks. The results demonstrate that such a physically coherent yet relatively simple method can represent a further valid computational tool that is alternative and complementary to other extremely efficient computational methods, as it is particularly suited for addressing the thermodynamics of gaseous systems with a high conformational complexity over a large range of temperature.
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