ACEMD: Accelerating Biomolecular Dynamics in the Microsecond Time Scale

J Chem Theory Comput. 2009 Jun 9;5(6):1632-9. doi: 10.1021/ct9000685. Epub 2009 May 21.


The high arithmetic performance and intrinsic parallelism of recent graphical processing units (GPUs) can offer a technological edge for molecular dynamics simulations. ACEMD is a production-class biomolecular dynamics (MD) engine supporting CHARMM and AMBER force fields. Designed specifically for GPUs it is able to achieve supercomputing scale performance of 40 ns/day for all-atom protein systems with over 23 000 atoms. We provide a validation and performance evaluation of the code and run a microsecond-long trajectory for an all-atom molecular system in explicit TIP3P water on a single workstation computer equipped with just 3 GPUs. We believe that microsecond time scale molecular dynamics on cost-effective hardware will have important methodological and scientific implications.