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Importance of Relativistic Effects and Electron Correlation in Structure Factors and Electron Density of Diphenyl Mercury and Triphenyl Bismuth

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posted on 19.07.2016 by Lukáš Bučinský, Dylan Jayatilaka, Simon Grabowsky
This study investigates the possibility of detecting relativistic effects and electron correlation in single-crystal X-ray diffraction experiments using the examples of diphenyl mercury (HgPh2) and triphenyl bismuth (BiPh3). In detail, the importance of electron correlation (ECORR), relativistic effects (REL) [distinguishing between total, scalar and spin–orbit (SO) coupling relativistic effects] and picture change error (PCE) on the theoretical electron density, its topology and its Laplacian using infinite order two component (IOTC) wave functions is discussed. This is to develop an understanding of the order of magnitude and shape of these different effects as they manifest in the electron density. Subsequently, the same effects are considered for the theoretical structure factors. It becomes clear that SO and PCE are negligible, but ECORR and scalar REL are important in low- and medium-order reflections on absolute and relative scalesnot in the high-order region. As a further step, Hirshfeld atom refinement (HAR) and subsequent X-ray constrained wavefunction (XCW) fitting have been performed for the compound HgPh2 with various relativistic and nonrelativistic wave functions against the experimental structure factors. IOTC calculations of theoretical structure factors and relativistic HAR as well as relativistic XCW fitting are presented for the first time, accounting for both scalar and spin–orbit relativistic effects.