Innovative experimental techniques

We specialise in developing innovative experimental techniques, coupled with a variety of analytical methods (lasers, mass spectrometry, Fourier Transform Infrared spectroscopy, CRDS …), in order to determine data under extreme temperature conditions, from 5 to 2000 K! Here we provide brief descriptions of some of our main experimental techniques:

the CRESU technique for studying low temperature reactive and inelastic collisions

Fourier Transform Infra-Red (FTIR) spectroscopy, coupled with innovative high and low temperature flows and cells 

CRESU - A view of the first CRESU chamber constructed here in Rennes, with Sébastien Le Picard who coordinates the Laboratory Astrophysics research group.

 Our experimental setups are subject to continuous updating and modification, thanks to the excellent technical support which we enjoy. Other techniques under development here in Rennes include: pulsed versions of the CRESU technique, coupling of new ion sources to an FTIR spectrometer, long slit-jets, generation of a cold plasma in a long path-length optical (White) cell, implementation of Cavity Ring Down Spectroscopy (CRDS) with a high enthalpy source…

All these developments have two main objectives: [1] recreate the extreme temperatures encountered in a wide variety of astrophysical environments: interstellar clouds, circumstellar shells, brown dwarves, planetary atmospheres… [2] stimulate quantum calculations at the highest level to model the molecular interactions involved and thereby predict behaviour for unstudied systems or under conditions unattainable in the laboratory.