How to verify the precision of density-functional-theory implementations via reproducible and universal workflows

Emanuele Bosoni, Louis Beal, Marnik Bercx, Peter Blaha, Stefan Blügel, Jens Bröder, Martin Callsen, Stefaan Cottenier, Augustin Degomme, Vladimir Dikan, Kristjan Eimre, Espen Flage-Larsen, Marco Fornari, Alberto Garcia, Luigi Genovese, Matteo Giantomassi, Sebastiaan P. Huber, Henning Janssen, Georg Kastlunger, Matthias KrackGeorg Kresse, Thomas D. Kühne, Kurt Lejaeghere, Georg K.H. Madsen, Martijn Marsman, Nicola Marzari, Gregor Michalicek, Hossein Mirhosseini, Tiziano M.A. Müller, Guido Petretto, Chris J. Pickard, Samuel Poncé, Gian Marco Rignanese, Oleg Rubel, Thomas Ruh, Michael Sluydts, Danny E.P. Vanpoucke, Sudarshan Vijay, Michael Wolloch, Daniel Wortmann, Aliaksandr V. Yakutovich, Jusong Yu, Austin Zadoks, Bonan Zhu, Giovanni Pizzi*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


Density-functional theory methods and codes adopting periodic boundary conditions are extensively used in condensed matter physics and materials science research. In 2016, their precision (how well properties computed with different codes agree among each other) was systematically assessed on elemental crystals: a first crucial step to evaluate the reliability of such computations. In this Expert Recommendation, we discuss recommendations for verification studies aiming at further testing precision and transferability of density-functional-theory computational approaches and codes. We illustrate such recommendations using a greatly expanded protocol covering the whole periodic table from Z = 1 to 96 and characterizing 10 prototypical cubic compounds for each element: four unaries and six oxides, spanning a wide range of coordination numbers and oxidation states. The primary outcome is a reference dataset of 960 equations of state cross-checked between two all-electron codes, then used to verify and improve nine pseudopotential-based approaches. Finally, we discuss the extent to which the current results for total energies can be reused for different goals.

Original languageEnglish
JournalNature Reviews Physics
Pages (from-to)45–58
Publication statusPublished - 2024


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