Exact nonadditive kinetic potentials for embedded density functional theory

Jason D. Goodpaster, Nandini Ananth, Frederick R. Manby, Thomas F. Miller

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We describe an embedded density functional theory (DFT) protocol in which the nonadditive kinetic energy component of the embedding potential is treated exactly. At each iteration of the Kohn-Sham equations for constrained electron density, the Zhao-Morrison-Parr constrained search method for constructing Kohn-Sham orbitals is combined with the King-Handy expression for the exact kinetic potential. We use this formally exact embedding protocol to calculate ionization energies for a series of three- and four-electron atomic systems, and the results are compared to embedded DFT calculations that utilize the Thomas-Fermi (TF) and the Thomas-Fermi-von Weisacker approximations to the kinetic energy functional. These calculations illustrate the expected breakdown due to the TF approximation for the nonadditive kinetic potential, with errors of 30%-80% in the calculated ionization energies; by contrast, the exact protocol is found to be accurate and stable. To significantly improve the convergence of the new protocol, we introduce a density-based switching function to map between the exact nonadditive kinetic potential and the TF approximation in the region of the nuclear cusp, and we demonstrate that this approximation has little effect on the accuracy of the calculated ionization energies. Finally, we describe possible extensions of the exact protocol to perform accurate embedded DFT calculations in large systems with strongly overlapping subsystem densities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number084103
JournalJournal of Chemical Physics
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 28 2010

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