Ab initio simulation methods for the electronic and structural properties of materials applied to molecules, clusters, nanocrystals, and liquids
MetadataShow full item record
Computational approaches play an important role in today's materials science owing to the remarkable advances in modern supercomputing architecture and algorithms. Ab initio simulations solely based on a quantum description of matter are now very able to tackle materials problems in which the system contains up to a few thousands atoms. This dissertation aims to address the modern electronic structure calculation methods applied to a range of various materials such as liquid and amorphous phase materials, nanostructures, and small organic molecules. Our simulations were performed within the density functional theory framework, emphasizing the use of real-space ab initio pseudopotentials. On the first part of our study, we performed liquid and amorphous phase simulations by employing a molecular dynamics technique accelerated by a Chebyshev-subspace filtering algorithm. We applied this technique to find l- and a- SiO₂ structural properties that were in a good agreement with experiments. On the second part, we studied nanostructured semiconducting oxide materials, i.e., SnO₂ and TiO₂, focusing on the electronic structures and optical properties. Lastly, we developed an efficient simulation method for non-contact atomic force microscopy. This fast and simple method was found to be a very powerful tool for predicting AFM images for many surface and molecular systems.