# On the short-time limit of ring polymer molecular dynamics

**ABSTRACT** We examine the short-time accuracy of a class of approximate quantum dynamical techniques that includes the centroid molecular dynamics (CMD) and ring polymer molecular dynamics (RPMD) methods. Both of these methods are based on the path integral molecular dynamics (PIMD) technique for calculating the exact static equilibrium properties of quantum mechanical systems. For Kubo-transformed real-time correlation functions involving operators that are linear functions of positions or momenta, the RPMD and (adiabatic) CMD approximations differ only in the choice of the artificial mass matrix of the system of ring polymer beads that is employed in PIMD. The obvious ansatz for a general method of this type is therefore to regard the elements of the PIMD (or Parrinello-Rahman) mass matrix as an adjustable set of parameters that can be chosen to improve the accuracy of the resulting approximation. We show here that this ansatz leads uniquely to the RPMD approximation when the criterion that is used to select the mass matrix is the short-time accuracy of the Kubo-transformed correlation function. In particular, we show that the leading error in the RPMD position autocorrelation function is O(t(8)) and the error in the velocity autocorrelation function is O(t(6)), for a general anharmonic potential. The corresponding errors in the CMD approximation are O(t(6)) and O(t(4)), respectively.

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**ABSTRACT:**Within the adiabatic approximation, it is trivial to generalize existing imaginary time path-integral techniques to the case of multiple electronic surfaces. However, there are many times where nonadiabatic effects can play an important role. To this end, we reformulate the well-known path-integral expressions to incorporate multiple potential surfaces, without necessitating the adiabatic approximation. We show that the resulting expression, like its adiabatic counterpart, can be interpreted in terms of a simple classical isomorphic system and thus is amenable to simulation through Monte Carlo techniques. We derive simple expressions to compute expectation values of a general operator in both the nuclear coordinate and electronic state, and demonstrate the existence of a simple internal diagnostic that can be used to evaluate the magnitude of equilibrium nonadiabatic effects.The Journal of Chemical Physics 10/2007; 127(9):094103. DOI:10.1063/1.2757170 · 2.95 Impact Factor - [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]

**ABSTRACT:**The maximum entropy analytic continuation (MEAC) and ring polymer molecular dynamics (RPMD) methods provide complementary approaches to the calculation of real time quantum correlation functions. RPMD becomes exact in the high temperature limit, where the thermal time betavariant Planck's over 2pi tends to zero and the ring polymer collapses to a single classical bead. MEAC becomes most reliable at low temperatures, where betavariant Planck's over 2pi exceeds the correlation time of interest and the numerical imaginary time correlation function contains essentially all of the information that is needed to recover the real time dynamics. We show here that this situation can be exploited by combining the two methods to give an improved approximation that is better than either of its parts. In particular, the MEAC method provides an ideal way to impose exact moment (or sum rule) constraints on a prior RPMD spectrum. The resulting scheme is shown to provide a practical solution to the "nonlinear operator problem" of RPMD, and to give good agreement with recent exact results for the short-time velocity autocorrelation function of liquid parahydrogen. Moreover these improvements are obtained with little extra effort, because the imaginary time correlation function that is used in the MEAC procedure can be computed at the same time as the RPMD approximation to the real time correlation function. However, there are still some problems involving long-time dynamics for which the RPMD+MEAC combination is inadequate, as we illustrate with an example application to the collective density fluctuations in liquid orthodeuterium.The Journal of Chemical Physics 12/2007; 127(17):174108. DOI:10.1063/1.2786451 · 2.95 Impact Factor - [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]

**ABSTRACT:**The path integral ring polymer molecular dynamics method is combined with ‘on-the-fly’ab initio electronic structure calculations and applied to vibrational spectra of small molecules, LiH and H2O, at the room temperature. The results are compared with those of the numerically exact solution and ab initio path integral centroid molecular dynamics calculation. The peak positions in the calculated spectra are found to be reasonable, showing the red-shift due to potential anharmonicity. This unification enables the investigation of real-time quantum dynamics of chemically complex molecular systems on the ab initio Born-Oppenheimer potential energy surface.Chemical Physics Letters 01/2008; 451(4):175-181. DOI:10.1016/j.cplett.2007.11.091 · 1.90 Impact Factor