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Getting Started on Time-Resolved Molecular Spectroscopy

Jeffrey A. Cina

Publication Date - June 2022

ISBN: 9780199590315

160 pages
9.7 x 6.7 inches

In Stock


This textbook provides an overview of the basics of ultrafast molecular spectroscopy starting from time-dependent quantum mechanical perturbation theory in Hilbert space. It emphasizes the dynamics of nuclear and electronic motion, initiated and monitored by femtosecond laser pulses, which underlie the generation of nonlinear optical signals and inform their interpretation.

Topics include short-pulse electronic absorption, the molecular adiabatic approximation, transient-absorption spectroscopy, vibrational adiabaticity during conformational change, femtosecond stimulated Raman spectroscopy, multi-dimensional electronic spectroscopy and wave-packet interferometry, and two-dimensional wave-packet interferometry of electronic excitation-transfer systems.

The treatment is based on time-dependent quantum mechanics as it is presented in graduate-level quantum mechanics courses. It is designed to be accessible to beginning practitioners of ultrafast spectroscopy and is meant to serve as a bridge to more advanced treatises and research publications. Numerous exercises are embedded in the text to explore and expand upon the physical ideas encountered in this important research field.


  • Takes an original 'first-principles' approach, explaining time-resolved molecular spectroscopy by relying on basic concepts in quantum dynamics
  • Individual chapters are designed to be self-contained, to allow readers and instructors to select the most appropriate material for their interests and pedagogical requirements
  • Each chapter includes in-text exercises to illustrate or expand upon the ideas covered in the main text

About the Author(s)

Jeffrey A. Cina, University of Oregon

Jeff Cina earned a BS in Mathematics at UW-Madison, a PhD in Theoretical Physical Chemistry at UC-Berkeley, and carried out post-doctoral research at MIT. After teaching and conducting research at The University of Chicago, he joined the faculty at the University of Oregon in 1995. At Oregon, Cina was a founding member of the Oregon Center for Optics, now the Oregon Center for Optical, Molecular, and Quantum Science.


"Cina has written a comprehensive and concise graduate-level textbook that takes the reader through the theory underlying time-resolved molecular spectroscopy, from the basic quantum-dynamical treatment of the interaction of a molecule with light, to advanced techniques such as transient absorption, femtosecond-stimulated Raman spectroscopy, and two-dimensional wave-packet interferometry." -- K. Jobst, Memorial University of Newfoundland

"This book presents an insightful theoretical formulation of ultrafast molecular spectroscopy. It will be a valuable resource for researchers seeking to understand the connection between quantum mechanics and spectra." -- Nancy Makri, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Table of Contents

    1. Short-pulse electronic absorption
    2. Adiabatic approximation
    3. Transient-absorption spectroscopy: making ultrashort pulses worthwhile
    4. How fissors works: femtosecond stimulated Raman spectroscopy as a probe of conformational change
    5. Transient-absorption reprise: taking advantage of vibrational adiabaticity
    6. Two and a half approaches to two-dimensional wave-packet interferometry
    7. Two-dimensional wave-packet interferometry for an electronic energy-transfer dimer

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