Learning Invariant Representations of Molecules for Atomization Energy Prediction

Part of Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 25 (NIPS 2012)

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Grégoire Montavon, Katja Hansen, Siamac Fazli, Matthias Rupp, Franziska Biegler, Andreas Ziehe, Alexandre Tkatchenko, Anatole Lilienfeld, Klaus-Robert Müller


The accurate prediction of molecular energetics in chemical compound space is a crucial ingredient for rational compound design. The inherently graph-like, non-vectorial nature of molecular data gives rise to a unique and difficult machine learning problem. In this paper, we adopt a learning-from-scratch approach where quantum-mechanical molecular energies are predicted directly from the raw molecular geometry. The study suggests a benefit from setting flexible priors and enforcing invariance stochastically rather than structurally. Our results improve the state-of-the-art by a factor of almost three, bringing statistical methods one step closer to the holy grail of ''chemical accuracy''.