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Changes in polarization dictate necessary approximations for modeling electronic deexcitation intensity: Application to x-ray emission.


Accurate simulation of electronic excitations and deexcitations are critical for complementing complex spectroscopic experiments and can provide validation to theoretical approaches. Using a generalized framework, we contrast the accuracy and validity of orbital-constrained and linear-response approaches that build upon Kohn-Sham density functional theory (DFT) to simulate emission spectra of electronic origin and propose an efficient approximation, named many-body x-ray emission spectroscopy or MBXES, for simulating such processes. We show analytically as well as with computed examples that for electronic (de)excitation leading to an appreciable change in polarization (i.e., density rearrangement), the adiabatic approximation in a response-based formalism will be inadequate for the calculation of oscillator strength. Thus, such a change (e.g., in the net electrostatic dipole moment of a finite system) can be used as a metric for evaluating the applicability of the adiabatic response-based approach and can be particularly valuable in x-ray emission spectroscopy. On the other hand, MBXES, the flexible method introduced in this paper, can compute oscillator strengths accurately at a much lower computational expense on the basis of two DFT-based self-consistent field calculations. Using illustrative examples of emission spectra, the efficacy of the MBXES method is demonstrated by comparison with its parent theory, orbital-optimized DFT, and with experiments.

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