van Aggelen, H; Yang, Y; Yang, W, *Exchange-correlation energy from pairing matrix fluctuation and the particle-particle random phase approximation.*,
Journal of Chemical Physics, vol. 140 no. 18
(May, 2014),
pp. 18A511 [doi] .
**Abstract:**

*Despite their unmatched success for many applications, commonly used local, semi-local, and hybrid density functionals still face challenges when it comes to describing long-range interactions, static correlation, and electron delocalization. Density functionals of both the occupied and virtual orbitals are able to address these problems. The particle-hole (ph-) Random Phase Approximation (RPA), a functional of occupied and virtual orbitals, has recently known a revival within the density functional theory community. Following up on an idea introduced in our recent communication [H. van Aggelen, Y. Yang, and W. Yang, Phys. Rev. A 88, 030501 (2013)], we formulate more general adiabatic connections for the correlation energy in terms of pairing matrix fluctuations described by the particle-particle (pp-) propagator. With numerical examples of the pp-RPA, the lowest-order approximation to the pp-propagator, we illustrate the potential of density functional approximations based on pairing matrix fluctuations. The pp-RPA is size-extensive, self-interaction free, fully anti-symmetric, describes the strong static correlation limit in H2, and eliminates delocalization errors in H2(+) and other single-bond systems. It gives surprisingly good non-bonded interaction energies--competitive with the ph-RPA--with the correct R(-6) asymptotic decay as a function of the separation R, which we argue is mainly attributable to its correct second-order energy term. While the pp-RPA tends to underestimate absolute correlation energies, it gives good relative energies: much better atomization energies than the ph-RPA, as it has no tendency to underbind, and reaction energies of similar quality. The adiabatic connection in terms of pairing matrix fluctuation paves the way for promising new density functional approximations.*