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Personne# Tomislav Begusic

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Time-resolved spectroscopy

In physics and physical chemistry, time-resolved spectroscopy is the study of dynamic processes in materials or chemical compounds by means of spectroscopic techniques. Most often, processes are studi

Spectroscopie

La spectroscopie, ou spectrométrie, est l'étude expérimentale du spectre d'un phénomène physique, c'est-à-dire de sa décomposition sur une échelle d'énergie, ou toute autre grandeur se ramenant à un

Electronic structure

In physics, electronic structure is the state of motion of electrons in an electrostatic field created by stationary nuclei. The term encompasses both the wave functions of the electrons and the ene

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Molecular spectroscopy is an essential experimental technique in both fundamental physical sciences and applied research. For example, electronic spectroscopy, in which light induces a change in the electronic state of a molecule, is a powerful tool for studying light-matter interactions appearing in solar energy conversion and light-emitting devices. To explain experimental findings and compare them with theoretical predictions, scientists often compute properties that can only be inferred indirectly, rather than simulating the observed spectroscopic signals. This is partly due to challenges associated with the simulation of electronic spectra, which requires both an accurate description of the electronic structure and the quantum-dynamical treatment of the motion of atomic nuclei. As the exact methods to solve the underlying quantum-mechanical problem scale exponentially with the number of atoms, this task must be performed approximately for all but the smallest molecules.
In this thesis, we develop a set of methods to systematically study the effects of different approximations on the computed spectra. As our starting point, we consider a semiclassical method called the thawed Gaussian approximation, which has resurfaced in recent years as an efficient and robust alternative to simple but crude models or highly accurate but costly quantum dynamics methods. First, we present several practical improvements of the method, such as generalization to non-Condon effects or the efficient single-Hessian version, which enable a broader set of molecules to be studied. Second, we introduce a more fundamental modification of the methods - the inclusion of non-zero temperature effects. The underlying theory, which is inspired by the concept of so-called thermo-field dynamics, is exact and applies to any quantum dynamics method. Remarkably, within the thawed Gaussian approximation, the inclusion of non-zero temperature comes at nearly no additional computational cost.
These methods, developed originally for steady-state linear spectra, are then employed to compute state-of-the-art, time-resolved spectra, which are typically measured with ultrashort laser pulses. More precisely, we study how the anharmonicity of the potential energy surfaces and mode-mode (Duschinsky) couplings affect pump-probe and two-dimensional electronic spectra. This approach, based on the thawed Gaussian wavepacket propagation, is the first method that can exactly evaluate the nonlinear electronic spectra of many-dimensional, shifted, distorted, and Duschinsky-rotated harmonic potentials. As in the case of linear absorption and emission spectra, we again use the concept of thermo-field dynamics to include non-zero temperature effects in the simulation of two-dimensional electronic spectra. The resulting wavepacket picture of two-dimensional spectroscopy at arbitrary temperature could strongly impact how we interpret and simulate multidimensional spectra in the future.

Tomislav Begusic, Jiri Vanicek

Vibrationally resolved electronic spectra of polyatomic molecules provide valuable information about the quantum properties of both electrons and nuclei. This chapter reviews the recent progress in ab initio semiclassical calculations of such spectra, based on the thawed Gaussian approximation and its extensions. After reviewing molecular quantum dynamics induced by the interaction with electromagnetic field and the most common semiclassical approximations to quantum dynamics, we explain details of the thawed Gaussian approximation and its variants. Next, we discuss the time-dependent approach to steady-state and time-resolved electronic spectroscopy, and review several standard models that facilitate interpreting vibrationally resolved electronic spectra. Finally, we present the on-the-fly ab initio implementation of the thawed Gaussian approximation and provide several examples of both linear and pump-probe spectra computed with this methodology, which, at a low additional cost and without sacrificing the ease of interpretation, outperforms the standard global harmonic approaches.

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Understanding light-induced processes in biological and human-made molecular systems is one of the main goals of physical chemistry. It has been known for years that the photoinduced dynamics of atomic nuclei can be studied by looking at the vibrational substructure of electronic absorption and emission spectra. However, theoretical simulation is needed to understand how dynamics translates into the spectral features. Here, we review several recent developments in the computation of vibrationally resolved electronic spectra (sometimes simply called "vibronic" spectra). We present a theoretical approach for computing such spectra beyond the commonly used zero-temperature, Condon, and harmonic approximations. More specifically, we show how the on-the-fly ab initio thawed Gaussian approximation, which partially includes anharmonicity effects, can be combined with the thermo-field dynamics to treat non-zero temperature and with the Herzberg-Teller correction to include non-Condon effects. The combined method, which can treat all three effects, is applied to compute the S1 ← S0 and S2 ← S0 absorption spectra of azulene.

2021