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Published February 2015 | Published + Erratum + Supplemental Material
Journal Article Open

Embedded Mean-Field Theory


We introduce embedded mean-field theory (EMFT), an approach that flexibly allows for the embedding of one mean-field theory in another without the need to specify or fix the number of particles in each subsystem. EMFT is simple, is well-defined without recourse to parameters, and inherits the simple gradient theory of the parent mean-field theories. In this paper, we report extensive benchmarking of EMFT for the case where the subsystems are treated using different levels of Kohn–Sham theory, using PBE or B3LYP/6-31G* in the high-level subsystem and LDA/STO-3G in the low-level subsystem; we also investigate different levels of density fitting in the two subsystems. Over a wide range of chemical problems, we find EMFT to perform accurately and stably, smoothly converging to the high-level of theory as the active subsystem becomes larger. In most cases, the performance is at least as good as that of ONIOM, but the advantages of EMFT are highlighted by examples that involve partitions across multiple bonds or through aromatic systems and by examples that involve more complicated electronic structure. EMFT is simple and parameter free, and based on the tests provided here, it offers an appealing new approach to a multiscale electronic structure.

Additional Information

© 2015 American Chemical Society. This is an open access article published under an ACS AuthorChoice License, which permits copying and redistribution of the article or any adaptations for non-commercial purposes. Received: December 6, 2014. Publication Date (Web): January 9, 2015. Some of this work was performed while F.R.M. was on sabbatical at Caltech; support for this visit was provided by the Institute for Advanced Study at the University of Bristol, and is gratefully acknowledged. Additionally, K.M. acknowledges the support of Toyota Central R&D Laboratories., Inc., J.L. acknowledges a fellowship from the Kwanjeong Educational Foundation, and T.F.M. acknowledges support from a Camille and Henry Dreyfus Foundation Teacher-Scholar Award and an Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Research Fellowship. The authors declare no competing financial interest.

Attached Files

Erratum - acs_2Ejctc_2E5b00630.pdf

Published - ct5011032.pdf

Supplemental Material - ct5011032_si_001.pdf

Supplemental Material - ct5011032_si_002.txt

Supplemental Material - ct5011032_si_003.txt

Supplemental Material - ct5011032_si_004.txt


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August 20, 2023
September 8, 2023