## Abstract

We describe a method to evaluate electronic forces by path integral Monte Carlo (PIMC) calculation. Electronic correlations, as well as thermal effects, are included naturally in this method. For fermions, a restricted approach is used to avoid the "sign" problem. The PIMC force estimator is local and has a finite variance. We applied this method to determine the bond length of H_{2} and the chemical reaction barrier of H + H_{2}→H_{2} + H. At low temperature, good agreement is obtained with ground-state calculations. We studied the proton-proton interaction in an electron gas as a simple model for hydrogen impurities in metals. We calculated the force between the two protons at two electronic densities corresponding to Na (r_{s} = 3.93) and Al (r_{s} = 2.07) using a supercell with 38 electrons. The result is compared to previous calculations. We also studied the effect of temperature on the proton-proton interaction. At very high temperature, our result agrees with the Debye screening of electrons. As temperature decreases, the Debye theory fails both because of the strong degeneracy of electrons and most importantly, the formation of electronic bound states around the protons.

Original language | English (US) |
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Pages (from-to) | 5123-5130 |

Number of pages | 8 |

Journal | Physical Review E - Statistical Physics, Plasmas, Fluids, and Related Interdisciplinary Topics |

Volume | 58 |

Issue number | 4 |

DOIs | |

State | Published - 1998 |

## ASJC Scopus subject areas

- Statistical and Nonlinear Physics
- Statistics and Probability
- Condensed Matter Physics