Ultrafast Reaction Dynamics of Photochromic Molecular Switches
Photochromic molecules can be reversibly interconverted, i.e., switched, between two or more isomeric forms with distinctive physical and chemical properties by absorption of light at different wavelengths. The light-driven transformations are of great interest for the development of optimal memory and information storage devices, for applications as molecular switches, or for designing molecular machines. Towards these ends, however, one needs detailed information on the underlying ultrafast photochemical reaction dynamics. In this project within the new Collaborative Research Centre SFB 667 "Function by Switching", we use femtosecond spectroscopy as the method of choice to directly monitor the absorption and emission changes of the molecules during their light-induced transformations with time resolutions of 50 fs (5x10-14 s) or even better.