pgm: A Python package for free energy calculations within the phonon gas model
The quasi-harmonic approximation (QHA) is a powerful method that uses the volume dependence of non-interacting phonons to compute the free energy of materials at high pressures (P) and temperatures (T). However, anharmonicity, electronic excitations in metals, or both, introduce an intrinsic T-dependence on phonon frequencies, rendering the QHA inadequate. Here we present a Python code, pgm, to compute the free energy and thermodynamic property within the phonon gas model (PGM) that uses T-dependent phonon quasiparticle frequencies. In this case, the vibrational contribution to the Helmholtz free energy is obtained by integrating the vibrational entropy, which can be readily calculated for a system of phonon quasiparticles. Other thermodynamic properties are then obtained from standard thermodynamic relations. We demonstrate the successful applications of pgm to two cases of geophysical significance: cubic CaSiO3-perovskite (cCaPv), a strongly anharmonic insulator and the third most abundant phase of the Earth's lower mantle, and NiAs-type (B8) FeO, a partially covalent-metallic system. This is the oxide endmember of a recently discovered iron-rich FenO alloy phase likely to exist in the Earth's inner core.