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Ab initio random structure searching of organic molecular solids: assessment and validation against experimental data

Zilka, Miri, Dudenko, Dmytro V, Hughes, Colan, Williams, Philip, Sturniolo, Simone, Franks, W. Trent, Pickard, Chris J., Yates, Jonathan R., Harris, Kenneth and Brown, Steven P. 2017. Ab initio random structure searching of organic molecular solids: assessment and validation against experimental data. Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics 19 (38) , pp. 25949-25960. 10.1039/C7CP04186A

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This paper explores the capability of using the DFT-D ab-initio random structure searching (AIRSS) method to generate crystal structures of organic molecular materials, focusing on a system (m-aminobenzoic acid; m-ABA) that is known from experimental studies to exhibit abundant polymorphism. Within the structural constraints selected for the AIRSS calculations (specifically, centrosymmetric structures with Z = 4 for zwitterionic m-ABA molecules), the method is shown to successfully generate the two known polymorphs of m-ABA (form III and form IV) that have these structural features. We highlight various issues that are encountered in comparing crystal structures generated by AIRSS to experimental powder X-ray diffraction (XRD) data and solid-state magic-angle spinning (MAS) NMR data, demonstrating successful fitting for some of the lowest energy structures from the AIRSS calculations against experimental low-temperature powder XRD data for known polymorphs of m-ABA, and showing that comparison of computed and experimental solid-state NMR parameters allows different hydrogen-bonding motifs to be discriminated.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Published Online
Status: Published
Schools: Advanced Research Computing @ Cardiff (ARCCA)
Publisher: Royal Society of Chemistry
ISSN: 1463-9076
Funders: EPSRC
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 7 November 2017
Date of Acceptance: 30 August 2017
Last Modified: 08 May 2019 02:27

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