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Damiano Aliverti-Piuri, Kaustav Chatterjee, Lexin Ding, Ke Liao, Julia Liebert, Christian Schilling (Mar 14 2024).

Abstract: It is the ultimate goal of this work to foster synergy between quantum chemistry and the flourishing field of quantum information theory. For this, we first translate quantum information concepts such as entanglement and correlation into the context of quantum chemical systems. In particular, we establish two conceptually distinct perspectives on `electron correlation’ leading to a notion of orbital and particle correlation. We then demonstrate that particle correlation equals total orbital correlation minimized over all orbital bases. Accordingly, particle correlation resembles the minimal, thus intrinsic, complexity of many-electron wave functions while orbital correlation quantifies their complexity relative to a basis. We illustrate these concepts of intrinsic and extrinsic correlation complexity in molecular systems, which also manifests the crucial link between the two correlation pictures. Our results provide theoretical justification for the long-favored natural orbitals for simplifying electronic structures, and open new pathways for developing more efficient approaches towards the electron correlation problem.

Arxiv: https://arxiv.org/abs/2403.08045

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