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Analytic derivatives for perturbatively corrected “double hybrid” density functionals: Theory, implementation, and applications

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Neese, F., Schwabe, T., & Grimme, S. (2007). Analytic derivatives for perturbatively corrected “double hybrid” density functionals: Theory, implementation, and applications. The Journal of Chemical Physics, 126(12): 124115. doi:10.1063/1.2712433.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0008-3622-5
A recently proposed new family of density functionals [S. Grimme, J. Chem. Phys. 124, 34108 (2006)] adds a fraction of nonlocal correlation as a new ingredient to density functional theory (DFT). This fractional correlation energy is calculated at the level of second-order many-body perturbation theory (PT2) and replaces some of the semilocal DFT correlation of standard hybrid DFT methods. The new “double hybrid” functionals (termed, e.g., B2-PLYP) contain only two empirical parameters that have been adjusted in thermochemical calculations on parts of the G2/3 benchmark set. The methods have provided the lowest errors ever obtained by any DFT method for the full G3 set of molecules. In this work, the applicability of the new functionals is extended to the exploration of potential energy surfaces with analytic gradients. The theory of the analytic gradient largely follows the standard theory of PT2 gradients with some additional subtleties due to the presence of the exchange-correlation terms in the self-consistent field operator. An implementation is reported for closed-shell as well as spin-unrestricted reference determinants. Furthermore, the implementation includes external point charge fields and also accommodates continuum solvation models at the level of the conductor like screening model. The density fitting resolution of the identity (RI) approximation can be applied to the evaluation of the PT2 part with large gains in computational efficiency. For systems with ∼500–600
basis functions the evaluation of the double hybrid gradient is approximately four times more expensive than the calculation of the standard hybrid DFT gradient. Extensive test calculations are provided for main group elements and transition metal containing species. The results reveal that the B2-PLYP functional provides excellent molecular geometries that are superior compared to those from standard DFT and MP2.