Correction for dispersion and Coulombic interactions in molecular clusters with density functional derived methods: Application to polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon clusters

Mathias Rapacioli, Fernand Spiegelman, Dahbia Talbi, Tzonka Mineva, Annick Goursot, Thomas Heine, Gotthard Seifert

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61 Citations (Scopus)


The density functional based tight binding (DFTB) is a semiempirical method derived from the density functional theory (DFT). It inherits therefore its problems in treating van der Waals clusters. A major error comes from dispersion forces, which are poorly described by commonly used DFT functionals, but which can be accounted for by an a posteriori treatment DFT-D. This correction is used for DFTB. The self-consistent charge (SCC) DFTB is built on Mulliken charges which are known to give a poor representation of Coulombic intermolecular potential. We propose to calculate this potential using the class IV/charge model 3 definition of atomic charges. The self-consistent calculation of these charges is introduced in the SCC procedure and corresponding nuclear forces are derived. Benzene dimer is then studied as a benchmark system with this corrected DFTB (c-DFTB-D) method, but also, for comparison, with the DFT-D. Both methods give similar results and are in agreement with references calculations (CCSD(T) and symmetry adapted perturbation theory) calculations. As a first application, pyrene dimer is studied with the c-DFTB-D and DFT-D methods. For coronene clusters, only the c-DFTB-D approach is used, which finds the sandwich configurations to be more stable than the T-shaped ones.

Original languageEnglish
Article number244304
JournalJournal of Chemical Physics
Issue number24
Publication statusPublished - 2009 Jul 20


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Physics and Astronomy(all)
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry

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