Molecular orbital projectors in non-empirical jmDFT recover exact conditions in transition-metal chemistry

Abstract

Low-cost, non-empirical corrections to semi-local density functional theory are essential for accurately modeling transition-metal chemistry. Here, we demonstrate the judiciously modified density functional theory (jmDFT) approach with non-empirical U and J parameters obtained directly from frontier orbital energetics on a series of transition-metal complexes. We curate a set of nine representative Ti(III) and V(IV) d1 transition-metal complexes and evaluate their flat-plane errors along the fractional spin and charge lines. We demonstrate that while jmDFT improves upon both DFT+U and semi-local DFT with the standard atomic orbital projectors (AOPs), it does so inefficiently. We rationalize these inefficiencies by quantifying hybridization in the relevant frontier orbitals. To overcome these limitations, we introduce a procedure for computing a molecular orbital projector (MOP) basis for use with jmDFT. We demonstrate this single set of d1 MOPs to be suitable for nearly eliminating all energetic delocalization error and static correlation error. In all cases, MOP jmDFT outperforms AOP jmDFT, and it eliminates most flat-plane errors at non-empirical values. Unlike DFT+U or hybrid functionals, jmDFT nearly eliminates energetic delocalization error and static correlation error within a non-empirical framework.

Publication
J. Chem. Phys., 156 184112 (2022)
Chenru Duan
Chenru Duan
Graduate Student
Aditya Nandy
Aditya Nandy
Graduate Student
Heather J. Kulik
Heather J. Kulik
Associate Professor of Chemical Engineering