Variational perturbation theory for electrolyte solutions

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In most approaches to the statistical mechanics, the focus is on the particles in the system, where the partition function is given as an integral over their positions and orientations. In this chapter, we consider a field theoretic perspective, where the focus is on the interaction fields generated by the particles in the system, rather than the particles themselves. This approach has some advantages in that it can account for the large scale fluctuations in the system with natural approximation schemes. The two that are considered in this work are the mean-field approximation and variational perturbation theory. For electrolyte solutions, this leads naturally to the Poisson-Boltzmann theory and its improved modifications.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationVariational Methods in Molecular Modeling
EditorsJianzhong Wu
Number of pages18
ISBN (Print)9789811025006
Publication statusPublished - 18 Dec 2016

Publication series

NameMolecular Modeling and Simulation
ISSN (Print)2364-5083


  • electrolyte solutions
  • variational perturbation theory
  • interaction potential
  • electrostatic forces
  • partition function
  • Green’s function
  • e Poisson-Boltzmann theory
  • dispersion interactions

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