Chemists and physicists have studied electron transfer for a long time, thinking about how molecules and materials dissipate electronic energy through vibrational channels, how phonon modes can both provide and accept quanta to enhance relaxation, and how entropy is produced until equilibrium is eventually reached. Recently, the suggestion has been made that nonadiabatic effects may also be responsible for a host of cutting-edge experiments involving spin separation at room temperature in the condensed phase. Here, I will address our fundamental understanding of coupled nuclear-electronic motion in the presence of spin-orbit coupling, I will discuss the role played by large voltages and Berry force, and I will highlight a set of very exciting questions that are emerging at the intersection of spintronics and molecular dynamics.
Joseph Subotnik received his BA degree from Harvard University in 2000 majoring in physics and math. He earned a PhD in biophysics from Berkeley in 2006 with Martin Head-Gordon, focusing on electronic structure theory and local correlation. He then was an NSF postdoctoral fellow at Tel-Aviv University with Abe Nitzan (2007-2009), where he studied chemical dynamics and molecular transport. Afterwards, he spent a year (2009-2010) with Mark Ratner at Northwestern University. He started as an assistant professor at the University of Pennsylvania in 2010 and is currently the Edmund J and Louise W Kahn Term Professor of Chemistry. His research focuses on understanding friction, nonadiabatic motion, spin dynamics, and light-matter interactions in electronically excited molecules and materials.
Seminar Series by the NYU-ECNU Center for Computational Chemistry at NYU Shanghai