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Nonempirically Tuned Range-Separated DFT Accurately Predicts Both Fundamental and Excitation Gaps in DNA and RNA Nucleobases.

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Using a nonempirically tuned range-separated DFT approach, we study both the quasiparticle properties (HOMO-LUMO fundamental gaps) and excitation energies of DNA and RNA nucleobases (adenine, thymine, cytosine, guanine, and uracil). Our calculations demonstrate that a physically motivated, first-principles tuned DFT approach accurately reproduces results from both experimental benchmarks and more computationally intensive techniques such as many-body GW theory. Furthermore, in the same set of nucleobases, we show that the nonempirical range-separated procedure also leads to significantly improved results for excitation energies compared to conventional DFT methods. The present results emphasize the importance of a nonempirically tuned range-separation approach for accurately predicting both fundamental and excitation gaps in DNA and RNA nucleobases.

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