Linear scaling density functional theory (DFT) approaches to the electronic structure of materials are often based on the tendency of electrons to localize in large atomic and molecular systems. However, in many cases of actual interest, such as semiconductor nanocrystals, system sizes can reach a substantial extension before signiﬁcant electron localization sets in, causing a considerable deviation from linear scaling. Herein, we address this class of systems by developing a massively parallel DFT approach which does not rely on electron localization and is formally quadratic scaling yet enables highly eﬃcient linear wall-time complexity in the weak scalability regime. The method extends from the stochastic DFT approach described in Fabian et al. (WIRES: Comp. Mol. Sci. 2019, e1412) but is entirely deterministic. It uses standard quantum chemical atomcentered Gaussian basis sets to represent the electronic wave functions combined with Cartesian real-space grids for some operators and enables a fast solver for the Poisson equation. Our main conclusion is that when a processor-abundant high-performance computing (HPC) infrastructure is available, this type of approach has the potential to allow the study of large systems in regimes where quantum conﬁnement or electron delocalization prevents linear scaling.
We review a suite of stochastic vector computational approaches for studying the electronic structure of extended condensed matter systems. These techniques help reduce algorithmic complexity, facilitate efficient parallelization, simplify computational tasks, accelerate calculations, and diminish memory requirements. While their scope is vast, we limit our study to ground-state and finite temperature density functional theory (DFT) and second-order perturbation theory. More advanced topics, such as quasiparticle (charge) and optical (neutral) excitations and higher-order processes, are covered elsewhere. We start by explaining how to use stochastic vectors in computations, characterizing the associated statistical errors. Next, we show how to estimate the electron density in DFT and discuss highly effective techniques to reduce statistical errors. Finally, we review the use of stochastic vector techniques for calculating correlation energies within the secondorder Møller-Plesset perturbation theory and its finite temperature variational form. Example calculation results are presented and used to demonstrate the efficacy of the methods.
We develop a formalism for calculating forces on the nuclei within the linear-scaling stochastic density functional theory (sDFT) in a nonorthogonal atomcentered basis set representation (Fabian et al. Wiley Interdiscip. Rev.: Comput. Mol. Sci. 2019, 9, e1412, 10.1002/wcms.1412) and apply it to the Tryptophan Zipper 2 (Trpzip2) peptide solvated in water. We use an embedded-fragment approach to reduce the statistical errors (ﬂuctuation and systematic bias), where the entire peptide is the main fragment and the remaining 425 water molecules are grouped into small fragments. We analyze the magnitude of the statistical errors in the forces and ﬁnd that the systematic bias is of the order of 0.065 eV/Å (∼1.2 × 10−3Eh/a0) when 120 stochastic orbitals are used, independently of system size. This magnitude of bias is suﬃciently small to ensure that the bond lengths estimated by stochastic DFT (within a Langevin molecular dynamics simulation) will deviate by less than 1% from those predicted by a deterministic calculation.
We consider an arbitrary quantum mechanical system, initially in its ground-state, exposed to a time-dependent electromagnetic pulse with a carrier frequency ω0 and a slowly varying envelope of finite duration. By working out a solution to the time-dependent Schrödinger equation in the high-ω0 limit, we find that, to the leading order in ω−10, a perfect self-cancellation of the system’s linear response occurs as the pulse switches off. Surprisingly, the system’s observables are, nonetheless, describable in terms of a combination of its linear density response function and nonlinear functions of the electric field. An analysis of a jellium slab and jellium sphere models reveals a very high surface sensitivity of the considered setup, producing a richer excitation spectrum than accessible within the conventional linear response regime. On this basis, we propose a new spectroscopic technique, which we provisionally name the Nonlinear High-Frequency Pulsed Spectroscopy (NLHFPS). Combining the advantages of the extraordinary surface sensitivity, the absence of constraints by the traditional dipole selection rules, and the clarity of theoretical interpretation utilizing the linear response time-dependent density functional theory, NLHFPS has a potential to evolve into a powerful characterization method for nanoscience and nanotechnology
We introduce a tempering approach with stochastic density functional theory (sDFT), labeled t-sDFT, which reduces the statistical errors in the estimates of observable expectation values. This is achieved by rewriting the electronic density as a sum of a "warm" component complemented by "colder" correction(s). Since the "warm" component is larger in magnitude but faster to evaluate, we use many more stochastic orbitals for its evaluation than for the smaller-sized colder correction(s). This results in a significant reduction of the statistical fluctuations and the bias compared to sDFT for the same computational effort. We the method's performance on large hydrogen-passivated silicon nanocrystals (NCs), finding a reduction in the systematic error in the energy by more than an order of magnitude, while the systematic errors in the forces are also quenched. Similarly, the statistical fluctuations are reduced by factors of around 4-5 for the total energy and around 1.5-2 for the forces on the atoms. Since the embedding in t-sDFT is fully stochastic, it is possible to combine t-sDFT with other variants of sDFT such as energy-window sDFT and embedded-fragmented sDFT.
Stochastic density functional theory (sDFT) is becoming a valuable tool for studying ground-state properties of extended materials. The computational complexity of describing the Kohn–Sham orbitals is replaced by introducing a set of random (stochastic) orbitals leading to linear and often sub-linear scaling of certain ground-state observables at the account of introducing a statistical error. Schemes to reduce the noise are essential, for example, for determining the structure using the forces obtained from sDFT. Recently, we have introduced two embedding schemes to mitigate the statistical fluctuations in the electron density and resultant forces on the nuclei. Both techniques were based on fragmenting the system either in real space or slicing the occupied space into energy windows, allowing for a significant reduction in the statistical fluctuations. For chemical accuracy, further reduction of the noise is required, which could√be achieved by increasing the number of stochastic orbitals. However, the convergence is relatively slow as the statistical error scales as 1/ Nχ according to the central limit theorem, where Nχ is the number of random orbitals. In this paper, we combined the embedding schemes mentioned above and introduced a new approach that builds on overlapped fragments and energy windows. The new approach significantly lowers the noise for ground-state properties, such as the electron density, total energy, and forces on the nuclei, as demonstrated for a G-center in bulk silicon.
Generalized Kohn−Sham density functional theory is a popular computational tool for the ground state of extended systems, particularly within range-separated hybrid (RSH) functionals that capture the long-range electronic interaction. Unfortunately, the heavy computational cost of the nonlocal exchange operator in RSH-DFT usually conﬁnes the approach to systems with at most a few hundred electrons. A signiﬁcant reduction in the computational cost is achieved by representing the density matrix with stochastic orbitals and a stochastic decomposition of the Coulomb convolution (J. Phys. Chem. A 2016, 120, 3071). Here, we extend the stochastic RSH approach to excited states within the framework of linear-response generalized Kohn−Sham time-dependent density functional theory (GKS-TDDFT) based on the plane-wave basis. As a validation of the stochastic GKS-TDDFT method, the excitation energies of small molecules N2 and CO are calculated and compared to the deterministic results. The computational eﬃciency of the stochastic method is demonstrated with a two-dimensional MoS2 sheet (∼1500 electrons), whose excitation energy, exciton charge density, and (excited state) geometric relaxation are determined in the absence and presence of a point defect.
Efficient Boltzmann-sampling using first-principles methods is challenging for extended systems due to the steep scaling of electronic structure methods with the system size. Stochastic approaches provide a gentler system-size dependency at the cost of introducing "noisy" forces, which serve to limit the efficiency of the sampling. In the first-order Langevin dynamics (FOLD), efficient sampling is achievable by combining a well-chosen preconditioning matrix S with a time-step-bias-mitigating propagator (Mazzola et al., Phys. Rev. Lett., 118, 015703 (2017)). However, when forces are noisy, S is set equal to the force-covariance matrix, a procedure which severely limits the efficiency and the stability of the sampling. Here, we develop a new, general, optimal, and stable sampling approach for FOLD under noisy forces. We apply it for silicon nanocrystals treated with stochastic density functional theory and show efficiency improvements by an order-of-magnitude.
Abstract The Kubo-Greenwood (KG) formula is often used in conjunction with Kohn-Sham (KS) density functional theory (DFT) to compute the optical conductivity, particularly for warm dense mater. For applying the KG formula, all KS eigenstates and eigenvalues up to an energy cutoff are required and thus the approach becomes expensive, especially for high temperatures and large systems, scaling cubically with both system size and temperature. Here, we develop an approach to calculate the KS conductivity within the stochastic DFT (sDFT) framework, which requires knowledge only of the KS Hamiltonian but not its eigenstates and values. We show that the computational effort associated with the method scales linearly with system size and reduces in proportion to the temperature unlike the cubic increase with traditional deterministic approaches. In addition, we find that the method allows an accurate description of the entire spectrum, including the high-frequency range, unlike the deterministic method which is compelled to introduce a high-frequency cut-off due to memory and computational time constraints. We apply the method to helium-hydrogen mixtures in the warm dense matter regime at temperatures of \textbackslashsim60\textbackslashtext\kK\ and find that the system displays two conductivity phases, where a transition from non-metal to metal occurs when hydrogen atoms constitute \textbackslashsim0.3 of the total atoms in the system.
We perform all-electron, pure-sampling quantum Monte Carlo (QMC) calculations on ethylene and bifuran molecules. The orbitals used for importance sampling with a single Slater determinant are generated from Hartree-Fock and density functional theory (DFT). Their fixed-node energy provides an upper bound to the exact energy. The best performing density functionals for ethylene are BP86 and M06, which account for 99% of the electron correlation energy. Sampling from the π-electron distribution with these orbitals yields a quadrupole moment comparable to coupled cluster CCSD(T) calculations. However, these, and all other density functionals, fail to agree with CCSD(T) while sampling from electron density in the plane of the molecule. For bifuran, as well as ethylene, a correlation is seen between the fixed-node energy and deviance of the QMC quadrupole moment estimates from those calculated by DFT. This suggests that proximity of DFT and QMC densities correlates with the quality of the exchange nodes of the DFT wave function for both systems.
Linear-scaling implementations of density functional theory (DFT) reach their intended efficiency regime only when applied to systems having a physical size larger than the range of their Kohn–Sham density matrix (DM). This causes a problem since many types of large systems of interest have a rather broad DM range and are therefore not amenable to analysis using DFT methods. For this reason, the recently proposed stochastic DFT (sDFT), avoiding exhaustive DM evaluations, is emerging as an attractive alternative linear-scaling approach. This review develops a general formulation of sDFT in terms of a (non)orthogonal basis representation and offers an analysis of the statistical errors (SEs) involved in the calculation. Using a new Gaussian-type basis-set implementation of sDFT, applied to water clusters and silicon nanocrystals, it demonstrates and explains how the standard deviation and the bias depend on the sampling rate and the system size in various types of calculations. We also develop a basis-set embedded-fragments theory, demonstrating its utility for reducing the SEs for energy, density of states and nuclear force calculations. Finally, we discuss the algorithmic complexity of sDFT, showing it has CPU wall-time linear-scaling. The method parallelizes well over distributed processors with good scalability and therefore may find use in the upcoming exascale computing architectures. This article is categorized under: Electronic Structure Theory \textgreater Ab Initio Electronic Structure Methods Structure and Mechanism \textgreater Computational Materials Science Electronic Structure Theory \textgreater Density Functional Theory
Absorption cross-section spectra for gold nanoparticles were calculated using fully quantum Stochastic Density Functional Theory and a classical Finite-Difference Time Domain Maxwell solver. Spectral shifts were monitored as a function of size (1.3–) and shape (octahedron, cubeoctahedron and truncated cube). Even though the classical approach is forced to fit the quantum time-dependent density functional theory at , at smaller sizes there is a significant deviation as the classical theory is unable to account for peak splitting and spectral blueshifts even after quantum spectral corrections. We attribute the failure of classical methods at predicting these features to quantum effects and low density of states in small nanoparticles. Classically, plasmon resonances are modelled as collective conduction electron excitations, but at small nanoparticle size these excitations transition to few or even individual conductive electron excitations, as indicated by our results.
Generalized Kohn–Sham (GKS) theory extends the realm of density functional theory (DFT) by providing a rigorous basis for non-multiplicative potentials, the use of which is outside original Kohn–Sham theory. GKS theory is of increasing importance as it underlies commonly used approximations, notably (conventional or range-separated) hybrid functionals and meta-generalized-gradient-approximation (meta-GGA) functionals. While this approach is often extended in practice to time-dependent DFT (TDDFT), the theoretical foundation for this extension has been lacking, because the Runge–Gross theorem and the van Leeuwen theorem that serve as the basis of TDDFT have not been generalized to non-multiplicative potentials. Here, we provide the necessary generalization. Specifically, we show that with one simple but non-trivial additional caveat – upholding the continuity equation in the GKS electron gas – the Runge–Gross and van Leeuwen theorems apply to time-dependent GKS theory. We also discuss how this is manifested in common GKS-based approximations.
A stochastic orbital approach to the resolution of identity (RI) approximation for 4 index electron repulsion integrals (ERIs) is presented. The stochastic RI-ERIs are then applied to second order Møller-Plesset perturbation theory (MP2) utilizing a multiple stochastic orbital approach. The introduction of multiple stochastic orbitals results in an O(N_AO^3 ) scaling for both the stochastic RI-ERIs and stochastic RI-MP2, NAO being the number of basis functions. For a range of water clusters we demonstrate that this method exhibits a small prefactor and observed scalings of O(Ne^2.4) for total energies and O(Ne^3.1) for forces (Ne being the number of correlated electrons), outperforming MP2 for clusters with as few as 21 water molecules.
An ab initio Langevin dynamics approach is developed based on stochastic density functional theory (sDFT) within a new embedded fragment formalism. The forces on the nuclei generated by sDFT contain a random component natural to Langevin dynamics and its standard deviation is used to estimate the friction term on each atom by satisfying the fluctuation–dissipation relation. The overall approach scales linearly with system size even if the density matrix is not local and is thus applicable to ordered as well as disordered extended systems. We implement the approach for a series of silicon nanocrystals (NCs) of varying size with a diameter of up to 3nm corresponding to Ne = 3000 electrons and generate a set of configurations that are distributed canonically at a fixed temperature, ranging from cryogenic to room temperature. We also analyze the structure properties of the NCs and discuss the reconstruction of the surface geometry.
Charge carrier localization in extended atomic systems has been described previously as being driven by disorder, point defects, or distortions of the ionic lattice. Here we show for the first time by means of first-principles computations that charge carriers can spontaneously localize due to a purely electronic effect in otherwise perfectly ordered structures. Optimally tuned range-separated density functional theory and many-body perturbation calculations within the GW approximation reveal that in trans-polyacetylene and polythiophene the hole density localizes on a length scale of several nanometers. This is due to exchange-induced translational symmetry breaking of the charge density. Ionization potentials, optical absorption peaks, excitonic binding energies, and the optimally tuned range parameter itself all become independent of polymer length as it exceeds the critical localization length. Moreover, we find that lattice disorder and the formation of a polaron result from the charge localization in contrast to the traditional view that lattice distortions precede charge localization. Our results can explain experimental findings that polarons in conjugated polymers form instantaneously after exposure to ultrafast light pulses.
In exact density functional theory, the total ground-state energy is a series of linear segments between integer electron points, a condition known as “piecewise linearity.” Deviation from this condition is indicative of poor predictive capabilities for electronic structure, in particular of ionization energies, fundamental gaps, and charge transfer. In this article, we take a new look at the deviation from linearity (i.e., curvature) in the solid-state limit by considering two different ways of approaching it: a large finite system of increasing size and a crystal represented by an increasingly large reference cell with periodic boundary conditions. We show that the curvature approaches vanishing values in both limits, even for functionals which yield poor predictions of electronic structure, and therefore cannot be used as a diagnostic or constructive tool in solids. We find that the approach towards zero curvature is different in each of the two limits, owing to the presence of a compensating background charge in the periodic case. Based on these findings, we present a new criterion for functional construction and evaluation, derived from the size-dependence of the curvature, along with a practical method for evaluating this criterion. For large finite systems, we further show that the curvature is dominated by the self-interaction of the highest occupied eigenstate. These findings are illustrated by computational studies of various solids, semiconductor nanocrystals, and long alkane chains.
The applicability of Mulliken’s theory for photoinduced as well as intramolecular charge-transfer states is examined for several systems of interest by comparing its predictions to TDDFT excitation energies, obtained using functionals appropriate for charge-transfer (CT) states. The results show that it is possible to estimate the energy of the CT state of a donor–acceptor pair on the basis of information on the separate donor and acceptor moieties, along with structural data, within 0.3 eV of TDDFT values. The novelty and usefulness of the proposed method lies mainly in PET applications where the TDDFT determination of the CT state is challenging.