Creating material with special types of properties

  1. Jan 19, 2010 #1
    Let's say you have a vision of a material with certain special types of properties. How would I know what the chemical structure and components of that material would be? Is there some way to at least estimate what the chemical structure would be, and its a matter of guess and check? Does it involve complex mathematics and special computation?

    I know the basics of intermolecular and intramolecular forces. I took general chemisty and a semester of organic chemistry. What other information would I have to learn to understand these concepts? I understand its something that I can't learn overnight, but a starting point would be great.
  2. jcsd
  3. Jan 19, 2010 #2
    Depends on what kinds of properties you mean. Are you talking about drug design? Or do you mean something like, "I want a compound of this color, with a melting point at x"?
  4. Jan 19, 2010 #3
    For example, I want a substance with Young's modulus of X with electrical conductivity of Y. (although I understand that both these conditions are depended on conditions, I'll just say at STP). I suppose hardness can be determined by strong intermolecular forces (or for diamonds, strong intramolecular forces). Although I am unsure how metallic bonding occurs. And I don't know what would make a substance conductive or not.
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