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Keywords:

  • chemical bonding;
  • crystal orbital Hamilton population;
  • density-functional theory;
  • population analysis;
  • projector augmented-wave method

Quantum-chemical computations of solids benefit enormously from numerically efficient plane-wave (PW) basis sets, and together with the projector augmented-wave (PAW) method, the latter have risen to one of the predominant standards in computational solid-state sciences. Despite their advantages, plane waves lack local information, which makes the interpretation of local densities-of-states (DOS) difficult and precludes the direct use of atom-resolved chemical bonding indicators such as the crystal orbital overlap population (COOP) and the crystal orbital Hamilton population (COHP) techniques. Recently, a number of methods have been proposed to overcome this fundamental issue, built around the concept of basis-set projection onto a local auxiliary basis. In this work, we propose a novel computational technique toward this goal by transferring the PW/PAW wavefunctions to a properly chosen local basis using analytically derived expressions. In particular, we describe a general approach to project both PW and PAW eigenstates onto given custom orbitals, which we then exemplify at the hand of contracted multiple-ζ Slater-type orbitals. The validity of the method presented here is illustrated by applications to chemical textbook examples—diamond, gallium arsenide, the transition-metal titanium—as well as nanoscale allotropes of carbon: a nanotube and the inline image fullerene. Remarkably, the analytical approach not only recovers the total and projected electronic DOS with a high degree of confidence, but it also yields a realistic chemical-bonding picture in the framework of the projected COHP method. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.