First-principles investigation of quantum mechanical effects on the diffusion of hydrogen in iron and nickel
D. Di Stefano, M. Mrovec, C. Elsässer.
Physical Review B, 92, 224301, (2015)
The diffusion coefficients of interstitial hydrogen in bulk Fe and Ni crystals have been calculated over a wide range of temperatures employing first-principles methods based on density functional theory. Quantum mechanical effects have been included by means of the semiclassical transition state theory and the small-polaron model of Flynn and Stoneham. Our results show that to include such effects is crucial for a quantitative simulation of H diffusion in bcc Fe even at room temperature, while in the case of fcc Ni this is less important. The comparison with other theoretical approaches as well as with experimental studies emphasizes the main advantages of the present approach: it is quantitatively accurate and computationally efficient.