PhD ceremony: A.G. Dijkstra, 13.15 uur, Academiegebouw, Broerstraat 5, Groningen
Thesis: Models for nonlinear optical spectra of coupled oscillators
Promotor(s): prof. J. Knoester
Faculty: Mathematics and Natural Sciences
Biomolecules in water move continuously, and their dynamics can be seen in detail using modern laser technology. Arend Dijkstra describes in his thesis models that can be used to interprete such laser experiments. Short light pulses from the laser excite vibrations in a biomolecule. The precise nature of these vibrations turns out to depend strongly on the structure of the molecule and on the water in its direct vicinity. This is useful, because it means that the laser experiments contain information about the molecular structure and the solvent. To extract this information from experimental data, a comparison with the models is needed. The theory explains, for example, the microscopic origin of the typical Z-shape that is observed in the spectra of a class of proteins. Furthermore, the models reveal how energy transport in the biomolecule shows up in the experimental results.
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