About Physical Chemistry

Physical Chemistry is the application of fundamental laws and methods of physics to understand chemical structure and processes. Research in the department encompasses many fundamental applications with a strong interdisciplinary focus. The research in the department includes studies of the light-induced photochemical events in pigments and proteins in photosynthesis and vision; solar energy capture; optical and structural properties of nanoparticles at the single particle level; large-scale quantum chemical methods for protein structure and function; computation of structural and electronic properties of enzyme reactions; and atomistic simulations of monolayer protected nano-clusters.

The physical chemistry groups in the department use a wide range of modern experimental and computational techniques, including steady-state and ultrafast time-resolved optical spectroscopy, electron paramagnetic resonance, directed evolution to optimize proteins for device applications, molecular dynamic simulations of proteins and biomaterials, quantum chemistry techniques, Raman scattering, and plasmonics.