René Wugt Larsen - IR- and THz Spectroscopy

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The main topic of the research group is concerned with novel fundamental experimental investigations of weakly bound cluster molecules by complementary THz cluster spectroscopy approaches, which are complemented by first principles quantum chemical modeling. An ultimate challenge for the physical sciences is to describe accurately how the properties of macroscopic phenomena known from the energy, material and life sciences emerge from the interplay between non-covalent forces as directional hydrogen bonding, non-directional and long-range London dispersion forces and short-range steric repulsion between molecules.

Examples from the experimental part of the program involves THz studies of weakly bound cluster molecules embedded in soft “quantum crystals” of 99.9% enriched para-hydrogen or isolated in high-throughput pulsed supersonic jet expansions (collaboration partner) and high-resolution THz synchrotron gas phase studies of prototypical systems at the large-scale synchrotron facilities SOLEIL Synchrotron and Canadian Light Source, Inc. The detailed spectroscopic characterization and quantum chemical modeling of molecular recognition phenomena and the complex hydrogen bond networks involved in micro-solvation of organic molecules have been a key interest in recent years. 

In addition, several internal collaborations at DTU Chemistry concerned with spectroscopic characterization of novel metal-organic frameworks (molecular materials), organo-metallic complexes (green chemistry), polymers (functional materials) and enzyme surfaces (bio-catalysis) have recently been established. Another recent novel complementary activity is concerned with resonance-enhanced nano-IR surface spectroscopy at high spatial resolution (10 nm) beyond the diffraction limit to explore the adsorption of organic molecules to material surfaces

René Wugt Larsen