Efficient Boltzmann-sampling using first-principles methods is challenging for extended systems due to the steep scaling of electronic structure methods with the system size. Stochastic approaches provide a gentler system-size dependency at the cost of introducing "noisy" forces, which could limit the efficiency of the sampling. When the forces are deterministic, the first-order Langevin dynamics (FOLD) offers efficient sampling by combining a well-chosen preconditioning matrix S with a time-step-bias-mitigating propagator [G. Mazzola and S. Sorella, Phys. Rev. Lett. 118, 015703 (2017)]. However, when forces are noisy, S is set equal to the force-covariance matrix, a procedure that severely limits the efficiency and the stability of the sampling. Here, we develop a new, general, optimal, and stable sampling approach for FOLD under noisy forces. We apply it for silicon nanocrystals treated with stochastic density functional theory and show efficiency improvements by an order-of-magnitude.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)161103
JournalThe Journal of Chemical Physics
Issue number16
StatePublished - 30 Apr 2020


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