Approaching the complete-basis limit with a truncated many-body expansion

Ryan M. Richard, Ka Un Lao, John M. Herbert
2013 Journal of Chemical Physics  
High-accuracy electronic structure calculations with correlated wave functions demand the use of large basis sets and complete-basis extrapolation, but the accuracy of fragment-based quantum chemistry methods has most often been evaluated using double-ζ basis sets, with errors evaluated relative to a supersystem calculation using the same basis set. Here, we examine the convergence towards the basis-set limit of two-and three-body expansions of the energy, for water clusters and ion-water
more » ... rs, focusing on calculations at the level of second-order Møller-Plesset perturbation theory (MP2). Several different corrections for basis-set superposition error (BSSE), each consistent with a truncated many-body expansion, are examined as well. We present a careful analysis of how the interplay of errors (from all sources) influences the accuracy of the results. We conclude that fragment-based methods often benefit from error cancellation wherein BSSE offsets both incompleteness of the basis set as well as higher-order many-body effects that are neglected in a truncated many-body expansion. An n-body counterpoise correction facilitates smooth extrapolation to the MP2 basis-set limit, and at n = 3 affords accurate results while requiring calculations in subsystems no larger than trimers.
doi:10.1063/1.4836637 pmid:24329051 fatcat:qc2o46gu75hazd5vczapuqyyga