Accurate Modeling of Organic Molecular Crystals by Dispersion-Corrected Density Functional Tight Binding (DFTB)


The ambitious goal of organic crystal structure prediction challenges theoretical methods regarding their accuracy and efficiency. Dispersion-corrected density functional theory (DFT-D) in principle is applicable, but the computational demands, for example, to compute a huge number of polymorphs, are too high. Here, we demonstrate that this task can be carried out by a dispersion-corrected density functional tight binding (DFTB) method. The semiempirical Hamiltonian with the D3 correction can accurately and efficiently model both solid- and gas-phase inter- and intramolecular interactions at a speed up of 2 orders of magnitude compared to DFT-D. The mean absolute deviations for interaction (lattice) energies for various databases are typically 2–3 kcal/mol (10–20%), that is, only about two times larger than those for DFT-D. For zero-point phonon energies, small deviations of <0.5 kcal/mol compared to DFT-D are obtained

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