Density Functional Theory in Computational Materials Science

University dissertation from Uppsala : Acta Universitatis Upsaliensis

Abstract: The present thesis is concerned to the application of first-principles self-consistent total-energy calculations within the density functional theory on different topics in materials science.Crystallographic phase-transitions under high-pressure has been study for TiO2, FeI2, Fe3O4, Ti, the heavy alkali metals Cs and Rb, and C3N4. A new high-pressure polymorph of TiO2 has been discovered, this new polymorph has an orthorhombic OI (Pbca) crystal structure, which is predicted theoretically for the pressure range 50 to 100 GPa. Also, the crystal structures of Cs and Rb metals have been studied under high compressions. Our results confirm the recent high-pressure experimental observations of new complex crystal structures for the Cs-III and Rb-III phases. Thus, it is now certain that the famous isostructural phase transition in Cs is rather a new crystallographic phase transition.The elastic properties of the new superconductor MgB2 and Al-doped MgB2 have been investigated. Values of all independent elastic constants (c11, c12, c13, c33, and c55) as well as bulk moduli in the a and c directions (Ba and Bc respectively) are predicted. Our analysis suggests that the high anisotropy of the calculated elastic moduli is a strong indication that MgB2 should be rather brittle. Al doping decreases the elastic anisotropy of MgB2 in the a and c directions, but, it will not change the brittle behaviour of the material considerably.The three most relevant battery properties, namely average voltage, energy density and specific energy, as well as the electronic structure of the Li/LixMPO4 systems, where M is either Fe, Mn, or Co have been calculated. The mixing between Fe and Mn in these materials is also examined. Our calculated values for these properties are in good agreement with recent experimental values. Further insight is gained from the electronic density of states of these materials, through which conclusions about the physical properties of the various phases are made.The electronic and magnetic properties of the dilute magnetic semiconductor Mn-doped ZnO has been calculated. We have found that for an Mn concentration of 5.6%, the ferromagnetic configuration is energetically stable in comparison to the antiferromgnetic one. A half-metallic electronic structure is calculated by the GGA approximation, where Mn ions are in a divalent state leading to a total magnetic moment of 5 ?B per Mn atom.