Search for suitable approximation methods for fullerene structure and relative stability studies: Case study with C50
Local density approximation (LDA), several popular general gradient approximation (GGA), hybrid module based density functional theoretical methods: SVWN, BLYP, PBE, HCTH, B3LYP, PBE1PBE, B1LYP, and BHandHLYP, and some nonstandard hybrid methods are applied in geometry prediction for C60 and C70. HCTH with 3-21G basis set is found to be one of the best methods for fullerene structural prediction. In the predictions of relative stability of C50 isomers, PM3 is an efficient method in the first step for sorting out the most stable isomers. HCTH with 3-21G predicts very good geometries for C50, similar to the performance of B3LYP /6-31G(d). The gap between the highest occupied molecular orbital and the lowest unoccupied molecular orbital from the predictions of all the density functional theory methods has the following descending order: Egap(half-and-halfhybrid)>Egap(B3LYP)>Egap(HCTH)(GGA)>Egap(SVWN)(LDA).