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Ultrafast Imaging of Photochemical Dynamics: Faraday Discussion

Date Mi, 31.08.2016 - Fr, 02.09.2016
Time All day
Location Royal Society of Edinburgh, 22-26 George St, Edinburgh, Midlothian EH2 2PQ
Program Photochemical reactions have tremendous scientific importance, ranging from photosynthesis to atmospheric reactions, and technologies such as sensors or displays. Due to the intrinsic complexity of photochemical reactions, they remain the least understood type of chemical process. Nonadiabatic dynamics, ultrafast time-scales, quantum effects and conical intersections are known to be important, but a detailed comprehension remains elusive. However, new experimental techniques capable of monitoring photochemical processes in unprecedented detail are appearing. This includes the development of intense-laser techniques, the construction of free-electron lasers such as the XFEL in Europe and the LCLS in the USA, new sources of pulsed electrons, advanced detection techniques, and important advances in theoretical modelling of quantum dynamics. Many of these techniques are developed by research communities not traditionally concerned with photochemistry, but provide an opportunity to shed new light on photochemical dynamics.

Electronic and non-adiabatic dynamics
This session will focus on the important electronic transitions and electronic re-arrangements that accompany photochemical reactions. Techniques used to study these phenomena include photoelectron and high harmonic spectroscopy, as well as a host of other techniques made possible by new table-top XUV and VUV light sources and improved detection techniques.
Attosecond processes and X-ray spectroscopy
Attosecond processes and X-ray spectroscopies can provide unique fingerprints of photochemical reactions. This session will focus on new techniques made possible by XFEL sources and ultrafast laser developments. It will cover both high energy and high intensity experiments relevant to chemical structure and dynamics, including the theoretical modelling of how these pulses interact with atoms and molecules.
Structural dynamics
Many photochemical reactions are intrinsically linked to complex structural dynamics triggered by the initial absorption of a photon. This session will focus on new ultrafast diffraction techniques made possible by the new hard x-ray lasers and ultrafast electron sources, as well as complementary structural techniques such as Coulomb explosion imaging.
Vibrational and condensed phase dynamics
Vibrational dynamics and condensed phase photochemistry have wide-ranging importance and interest. Frequently, the solvent and other environmental effects strongly modify photochemical reaction pathways. This session will focus on vibrational dynamics and photochemistry in small and large molecules in the condensed phase.

The purpose of this meeting is to gather key participants who represent the full scientific scope of ultrafast imaging and photochemical dynamics. Bringing together different communities of experimentalist and theoreticians working on similar topics but from different perspectives provides an opportunity to ask the fundamental questions and to set the agenda for future research. The meeting will be used to identify how new techniques can complement each other, while addressing specific areas of contention and controversy, and asking; Is the field reaching a point where the fundamental guiding principles of photochemistry can be established?

The Faraday Division have been organising high impact Faraday Discussions in rapidly developing areas of physical chemistry and its interfaces with other scientific disciplines for over 100 years.
Faraday Discussions have a special format where research papers written by the speakers are distributed to all participants before the meeting, and most of the meeting is devoted to discussing the papers. Everyone contributes to the discussion - including presenting their own relevant research.
The research papers and a record of the discussion are published in the journal Faraday Discussions.

The format of the Faraday Discussions meeting is ideal for discussions that transgress the many emerging experimental technologies and theoretical approaches. An auxiliary benefit of the meeting is to bring together established researchers in the field with the new community coming through.
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Link Ultrafast Imaging of Photochemical Dynamics
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