Study of a non-interacting, nonuniform electron gas in two dimensions
Koivisto, Michael William
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The non-interacting, nonuniform electron gas exhibits simplifications in two dimensions, that are of particular interest in the application of density functional theory. The results of linear response theory for an attractive impurity in a two-dimensional gas have been shown to be surprisingly accurate even though there are bound states, and were shown to be exact in the high density limit (Zaremba et al. Phys. Rev. B, 71:125323, 2005 and Zaremba et al. Phys. Rev. Lett., 90(4):046801, 2003). The density resulting from linear response theory and the Thomas-Fermi approximation coincide in the high density limit. As an alternative to linear response theory, the Kirzhnits gradient expansion gives corrections to Thomas-Fermi in gradients of the potential. In two dimensions, all of the gradient corrections vanish at zero temperature, which is a new result presented in this work. We have performed numerical calculations which show that while Thomas-Fermi appears to be a surprisingly accurate approximation in two dimensions, it is not exact. The differences between two and three dimensions that lead to the vanishing of the gradient corrections, however, are of great interest since these may lead to better understanding and simplifications of the corresponding three-dimensional problem.