The Department of Molecular Physics brings together theoreticians and experimentalists working on the structure and dynamics of atomic and molecular systems, and their interaction with light. The department is organised around 3 axes whose preoccupations are both fundamental as well as applications in domains such as astrophysics, atmospheric, environmental or industrial physics.
The department develops and uses numerical methods and associated computer codes, based on the time-dependent and time-dependent formalisms of quantum mechanics. Experimental studies are based around novel techniques and equipment (reaction dynamics in uniform supersonic gas flows, infrared cells with long absorption discharge paths, high enthalpy sources), and also make use of large-scale facilities such as the SOLEIL and ERSF synchrotron sources.
Various current research topics include theoretical studies of molecular processes and cold and ultra-cold temperatures, the dynamics of nanodroplets of helium, or energy transfer by collisions. Ongoing experimental work include studies of chemical reactivity in the gas phase at very low temperatures, between 5K and 200K, which are pertinent for various planetary and astrophysical environments; infrared spectroscopy at very high temperatures, between 1000K and 2000K, needed in the modelling of circumstellar envelopes; the formation of particles from the gas phase during combustion or in electric arcs. More recently, newer research themes such as the study of water vapour condensation and the evolution of atmospheric pollutants have started to emerge.
Group leader : Alexandra VIEL
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The department is organizing the 22nd edition of MOLEC in 2018
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Research activities in the group are organised around three research axes :