Charles S. Parmenter

Indiana University

Primary Section: 14, Chemistry
Membership Type: Member (elected 1995)

Research Interests

My chemical physics research has centered on a fundamental aspect of chemical reactivity, namely, how excitation energy flows among molecular energy levels. Our development of single vibronic level fluorescence spectroscopy provided the way to see how isolated molecules respond to selective vibrational excitation, as well as a means for reliable vibrational assignments of electronic absorption spectra. It also opened a now widely used approach to state-to-state collisional energy transfer in large molecules. With these tools, my laboratory found that energy flow rates have an unexpectedly high sensitivity to vibrational excitation and discovered that collisional vibrational energy transfer is governed by strong propensity rules. Our development of chemical timing fluorescence spectroscopy gave an early measure of the picosecond time scales for collision-free vibrational energy flow within excited molecules. My more recent efforts include crossed molecular beam probes of collisional rovibrational energy transfer and study of the mechanisms underlying collision-free energy flow among molecular energy levels.

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