11/16/17 - 9:45 AM to 11:00 AM
Student Seminar Series: Professor Troy Van Voorhis
Student Seminar Series
"Electronic Dynamics in Complex Environments: From Electron Transfer to Singlet Fission"
Some of the most basic chemical reactions are those that involve primarily the motion of electrons with little rearrangement of the nuclei. Prominent examples include electron transport and excitonic energy transfer as well as more exotic phenomena such as singlet fission. These reactions are the centerpiece of artificial photosynthetic complexes, organic PVs and essentially all of redox chemistry. In treating the dynamics of these reactions, it becomes clear that knowledge of the molecular conformation alone is not sufficient to define a reaction coordinate (since the nuclei may not more appreciably during the course of the reaction). In this talk, we will discuss how the “reactant” and “product” states for these types reactions can be clearly defined using the electron density as the fundamental variable. We will then illustrate how this discovery has advanced our understanding of the building blocks of artificial photosynthesis: electron transfer in solution, energy transfer in films and singlet fission in organic photovoltaics.
Professor Van Voorhis
Troy Van Voorhis is a professor of chemistry at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and an expert in electron transfer dynamics, solar energy, and molecular electronics. He received his bachelor’s degree in chemistry and mathematics from Rice University and his doctorate in chemistry from the University of California at Berkeley. Following a post-doctoral fellowship at Harvard, he joined the faculty of MIT.
His research focuses on the intersection of quantum mechanics and chemistry. In particular, his work addresses the fundamental electronic structure questions that underpin solar energy conversion: electronic excited states, molecular interactions, photochemistry and RedOx catalysis are all active areas of research in his group. He is the author of numerous scholarly publications, a David & Lucille Packard fellow and an Alfred P. Sloan fellow.
Event DetailsLocation: 331 Smith HallHost: Hung Pham, Katelyn Youmans & Jing Xie