Communication: Density functional theory embedding with the orthogonality constrained basis set expansion procedure

Tanner Culpitt, Kurt R. Brorsen, Sharon Hammes-Schiffer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

38 Scopus citations


Density functional theory (DFT) embedding approaches have generated considerable interest in the field of computational chemistry because they enable calculations on larger systems by treating subsystems at different levels of theory. To circumvent the calculation of the non-additive kinetic potential, various projector methods have been developed to ensure the orthogonality of molecular orbitals between subsystems. Herein the orthogonality constrained basis set expansion (OCBSE) procedure is implemented to enforce this subsystem orbital orthogonality without requiring a level shifting parameter. This scheme is a simple alternative to existing parameter-free projector-based schemes, such as the Huzinaga equation. The main advantage of the OCBSE procedure is that excellent convergence behavior is attained for DFT-in-DFT embedding without freezing any of the subsystem densities. For the three chemical systems studied, the level of accuracy is comparable to or higher than that obtained with the Huzinaga scheme with frozen subsystem densities. Allowing both the high-level and low-level DFT densities to respond to each other during DFT-in-DFT embedding calculations provides more flexibility and renders this approach more generally applicable to chemical systems. It could also be useful for future extensions to embedding approaches combining wavefunction theories and DFT.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number211101
JournalJournal of Chemical Physics
Issue number21
StatePublished - Jun 7 2017
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Physics and Astronomy
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry


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