Theoretical Chemistry

The central field of research in the Thiel group (1999 - 2018) were Theoretical and Computational Chemistry, in particular Quantum Chemistry. The group focused on theoretical developments that extend the scope of computational methodology, especially for large molecules. The group applied theoretical methods to study specific chemical problems, mostly in close cooperation with experimental partners. The activities of the group covered a broad methodological spectrum:

     > ab initio methods
     > density functional theory
     > semiempirical methods
     > combined quantum mechanical/molecular mechanical methods

Applications from these areas addressed the rovibrational spectra of small molecules, catalytic reactions of transition metal compounds, excited-state dynamics, and enzymatic reactions. They thus ranged from accurate calculations on small molecules to the approximate modeling of very complex systems with thousands of atoms.

The pioneering contributions of the Thiel group have, in multiple way, enriched not only theoretical chemistry. The methods developed by the Thiel group continue to be intensely used world-wide for the solution of chemical research problems. The MNDO program developed by the Thiel group can be obtain in an „open source“ version. Interested parties please contact

Research Topics:

Computing of vibration-rotation spectra of small molecules with high accuracy using correlated ab initio methods with large basis sets. In the past research in this area, coupled cluster CCSD(T) calculations were combined with ... [more]
Using of density functional methods in studies of transition metal compounds to understand and predict their properties, with special emphasis on their electronic structure and catalytic reactivity. Much of the work on homogeneous catalysis involved .... [more]
This research focused on hybrid approaches for large systems where the active center was treated by an appropriate quantum mechanical method, and the environment by a classical force field. It involved considerable method and code development. The QM/MM approach... [more]
This long-term project aimed at the development of improved semiempirical quantum-chemical methods that could be employed to study ever larger molecules with useful accuracy. This included the development of more efficient algorithms and computer programs. Applications were usually motivated by requests from experimental partners or by topical chemical problems, but they also served to explore the limits of new methods and codes. [more]

News until September 2019

Great honor: Philipp Hartmann (right) receives the Thiel Award, handed over by Prof. Frank Neese, Managing Director at the Max-Planck-Institut für Kohlenforschung.

Philipp Hartmann, PhD candidate in the group of Prof. Tobias Ritter, has been awarded the Thiel Award. Each year the Max-Planck-Institut für Kohlenforschung honors a young talent in the field of chemistry with this prestigious prize.  more

The Award was designed in the mechanical workshops of the Max Planck Institute.

Chemists of Europe pay tribute to the late Walter Thiel with their own award more

Colleagues remembering Walter Thiel

Obituaries on Prof. Dr. Walter Thiel who passed away unexpectedly on August 23rd, 2019. more

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Research Reports:


Arbeitsgemeinschaft Theoretische Chemie
Computional Chemistry List
Deutsche Bunsengesellschaft
Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft
Gesellschaft Deutscher Chemiker
International Academy of Quantum Molecular Sciences
World Association of Theoretical and Computational Chemists


ACS Meetings
CCL Conference List
GDCh Tagungen

International Symposium on Theoretical and Computational Chemistry
Festschrift: Journal of Physical Chemistry A 2009, 113 (43)

RUB Solvation Science

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