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[hal-02503507] A Mountaineering Strategy to Excited States: Highly-Accurate Energies and Benchmarks for Exotic Molecules and Radicals (5/14/20)
Moins

Aiming at completing the sets of FCI-quality transition energies that we recently developed (\textit{J.~Chem.~Theory Comput.} \textbf{14} (2018) 4360--4379, \textit{ibid.}~\textbf{15} (2019) 1939--1956, and \textit{ibid.}~\textbf{16} (2020) 1711--1741), we provide, in the present contribution, ultra-accurate vertical excitation energies for a series of "exotic" closed-shell molecules containing F, Cl, P, and Si atoms and small radicals, such as CON and its variants, that were not considered to date in such investigations. This represents a total of 81 high-quality transitions obtained with a series of diffuse-containing basis sets of various sizes. For the exotic compounds, these transitions are used to perform benchmarks with a vast array of lower-level models, i.e. CIS(D), EOM-MP2, (SOS/SCS)-CC2, STEOM-CCSD, CCSD, CCSDR(3), CCSDT-3, (SOS-)ADC(2), and ADC(3). Additional comparisons are made with literature data. For the open-shell compounds, we have compared the performances of both the unrestricted and restricted open-shell CCSD and CC3 formalisms.

[hal-02488633] A new spectroscopic method for measuring ferric diffusion coefficient in gelatin-based dosimeter gels (2/29/20)
Plus

A new absorption spectroscopy method which enables rapid measurement of the diffusion coefficient of Fe 3+ in gelatin gel used in dosimetry was investigated. The physical approach, the preparation and the experimental application of this new method were tested on the EasyDosit dosimetry gel and the results were validated by MRI measurement. The diffusion coefficients measured on this gel were then compared with those of the other gels presented in the literature. This gel, which is considered stable, has a small post-irradiation ion diffusion, despite the absence of a complexing or crosslinking agent. The diffusion coefficients of a range of dosimetry gels containing different proportions of gelatin were also measured and the results show diffusion coefficients D from 3.21.10 −10 m 2 .s −1 to 2.41.10 −10 m 2 .s −1 .

[hal-02485688] Variational principles in quantum Monte Carlo: the troubled story of variance minimization (3/2/20)
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We investigate the use of different variational principles in quantum Monte Carlo, namely energy and variance minimization, prompted by the interest in the robust and accurate estimate of electronic excited states. For two prototypical, challenging molecules, we readily reach the accuracy of the best available reference excitation energies using energy minimization in a state-specific or state-average fashion for states of different or equal symmetry, respectively. On the other hand, in variance minimization, where the use of suitable functionals is expected to target specific states regardless of the symmetry, we encounter severe problems for a variety of wave functions: as the variance converges, the energy drifts away from that of the selected state. This unexpected behavior is sometimes observed even when the target is the ground state, and generally prevents the robust estimate of total and excitation energies. We analyze this problem using a very simple wave function and infer that the optimization finds little or no barrier to escape from a local minimum or local plateau, eventually converging to the unique lowest-variance state instead of the target state. While the loss of the state of interest can be delayed and possibly avoided by reducing the statistical error of the gradient, for the full optimization of realistic wave functions, variance minimization with current functionals appears to be an impractical route.

[hal-02481706] The DIRAC code for relativistic molecular calculations (5/28/20)
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DIRAC is a freely distributed general-purpose program system for 1-, 2- and 4-component relativistic molecular calculations at the level of Hartree--Fock, Kohn--Sham (including range-separated theory), multiconfigurational self-consistent-field, multireference configuration interaction, coupled cluster and electron propagator theory. At the self-consistent-field level a highly original scheme, based on quaternion algebra, is implemented for the treatment of both spatial and time reversal symmetry. DIRAC features a very general module for the calculation of molecular properties that to a large extent may be defined by the user and further analyzed through a powerful visualization module. It allows the inclusion of environmental effects through three different classes of increasingly sophisticated embedding approaches: the implicit solvation polarizable continuum model, the explicit polarizable embedding, and frozen density embedding models. DIRAC was one of the earliest codes for relativistic molecular calculations and remains a reference in its field.

[hal-02346969] A Density-Based Basis-Set Incompleteness Correction for GW Methods (3/2/20)
Plus

Similar to other electron correlation methods, many-body perturbation theory methods based on Green functions, such as the so-called $GW$ approximation, suffer from the usual slow convergence of energetic properties with respect to the size of the one-electron basis set. This displeasing feature is due to lack of explicit electron-electron terms modeling the infamous Kato electron-electron cusp and the correlation Coulomb hole around it. Here, we propose a computationally efficient density-based basis set correction based on short-range correlation density functionals which significantly speeds up the convergence of energetics towards the complete basis set limit. The performance of this density-based correction is illustrated by computing the ionization potentials of the twenty smallest atoms and molecules of the GW100 test set at the perturbative $GW$ (or $G_0W_0$) level using increasingly large basis sets. We also compute the ionization potentials of the five canonical nucleobases (adenine, cytosine, thymine, guanine, and uracil) and show that, here again, a significant improvement is obtained.

[hal-02475410] Pros and Cons of the Bethe-Salpeter Formalism for Ground-State Energies (4/28/20)
Plus

The combination of the many-body Green's function $GW$ approximation and the Bethe-Salpeter equation (BSE) formalism has shown to be a promising alternative to time-dependent density-functional theory (TD-DFT) for computing vertical transition energies and oscillator strengths in molecular systems. The BSE formalism can also be employed to compute ground-state correlation energies thanks to the adiabatic-connection fluctuation-dissipation theorem (ACFDT). Here, we study the topology of the ground-state potential energy surfaces (PES) of several diatomic molecules near their equilibrium bond length. Thanks to comparisons with state-of-art computational approaches (CC3), we show that ACFDT@BSE is surprisingly accurate, and can even compete with lower-order coupled cluster methods (CC2 and CCSD) in terms of total energies and equilibrium bond distances for the considered systems. However, we sometimes observe unphysical irregularities on the ground-state PES in relation with difficulties in the identification of a few $GW$ quasiparticle energies.

[hal-02468242] Spin adaptation with determinant-based selected configuration interaction (3/2/20)
Plus

Selected configuration interaction (sCI) methods, when complemented with a second order perturbative correction , provide near full configuration interaction (FCI) quality energies with only a small fraction of the Slater determinants of the FCI space. The selection of the determinants is often implemented in a determinant-based formalism, and therefore does not provide spin adapted wave functions. In other words, sCI wave functions are not eigenfunctions of theŜ 2 operator. In some situations, having a spin adapted wave function is essential for the proper convergence of the method. We propose an efficient algorithm which, given an arbitrary determinant space, generates all the missing Slater determinants allowing one to obtain spin adapted wave functions while avoiding working with configuration state functions. For example, generating all the possible determinants with 6 up-spin and 6 down-spin electrons in 12 open shells takes 21 CPU cycles per generated Slater determinant. We also propose a modification of the denominators in the Epstein-Nesbet perturbation theory reducing significantly the non-invariance of the second order correction with respect to different values of the spin quantum number m s. The computational cost of this correction is also negligible.

[hal-02468226] The Quest For Highly Accurate Excitation Energies: A Computational Perspective (5/3/20)
Plus

We provide an overview of the successive steps that made possible to obtain increasingly accurate excitation energies with computational chemistry tools, eventually leading to chemically accurate vertical transition energies for small-and medium-size molecules. First, we describe the evolution of ab initio methods employed to define benchmark values, with originally Roos' CASPT2 method, then the CC3 method as in the renowned Thiel set, and more recently the resurgence of selected configuration interaction methods. The latter method has been able to deliver consistently, for both single and double excitations, highly accurate excitation energies for small molecules, as well as medium-size molecules with compact basis sets. Second, we describe how these high-level methods and the creation of representative benchmark sets of excitation energies have allowed to assess fairly and accurately the performance of computationally lighter methods. We conclude by discussing the future theoretical and technological developments in the field.

[hal-02403471] A Mountaineering Strategy to Excited States: Highly-Accurate Energies and Benchmarks for Medium Size Molecules (2/28/20)
Plus

Following our previous work focussing on compounds containing up to 3 non-hydrogen atoms [\emph{J. Chem. Theory Comput.} {\bfseries 14} (2018) 4360--4379], we present here highly-accurate vertical transition energies obtained for 27 molecules encompassing 4, 5, and 6 non-hydrogen atoms. To obtain these energies, we use equation-of-motion coupled cluster theory up to the highest technically possible excitation order for these systems (CC3, EOM-CCSDT, and EOM-CCSDTQ), selected configuration interaction (SCI) calculations (with tens of millions of determinants in the reference space), as well as the multiconfigurational $n$-electron valence state perturbation theory (NEVPT2) method. All these approaches are applied in combination with diffuse-containing atomic basis sets. For all transitions, we report at least CC3/\emph{aug}-cc-pVQZ vertical excitation energies as well as CC3/\emph{aug}-cc-pVTZ oscillator strengths for each dipole-allowed transition. We show that CC3 almost systematically delivers transition energies in agreement with higher-level methods with a typical deviation of $\pm 0.04$ eV, except for transitions with a dominant double excitation character where the error is much larger. The present contribution gathers a large, diverse and accurate set of more than 200 highly-accurate transition energies for states of various natures (valence, Rydberg, singlet, triplet, $n \rightarrow \pi^*$, $\pi \rightarrow \pi^*$, \ldots). We use this series of theoretical best estimates to benchmark a series of popular methods for excited state calculations: CIS(D), ADC(2), CC2, STEOM-CCSD, EOM-CCSD, CCSDR(3), CCSDT-3, CC3, as well as NEVPT2. The results of these benchmarks are compared to the available literature data.

[hal-02088494] Influence of Pseudopotentials on Excitation Energies From Selected Configuration Interaction and Diffusion Monte Carlo (2/28/20)
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Quantum Monte Carlo (QMC) methods have been applied very successfully to ground state properties but still remain generally less effective than other non-stochastic methods for electronically excited states. Nonetheless, we have recently reported accurate excitation energies for small organic molecules at the fixed-node diffusion Monte Carlo (FN-DMC) within a Jastrow-free QMC protocol relying on a deterministic and systematic construction of nodal surfaces using the selected configuration interaction (sCI) algorithm known as CIPSI (Configuration Interaction using a Perturbative Selection made Iteratively). Albeit highly accurate, these all-electron calculations are computationally expensive due to the presence of core electrons. One very popular approach to remove these chemically-inert electrons from the QMC simulation is to introduce pseudopotentials. However, such an approach inevitably introduces a bias due to the approximate nature of these pseudopotentials. Furthermore, an additional bias may be introduced in DMC due to the localization of nonlocal pseudopotentials. Taking the water molecule as an example, we investigate the influence of pseudopotentials on vertical excitation energies obtained with sCI and FN-DMC methods. Although pseudopotentials are known to be relatively safe for ground state properties, we evidence that special care is required if one strives for highly accurate vertical transition energies. Indeed, comparing all-electron and valence-only calculations, we show that the approximate nature of the pseudopotentials can induce errors as large as 0.1 eV on the excitation energies. While acceptable for most chemical applications, it might become unacceptable for benchmark studies.

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