20912 Lasers: Principles and Applications

Credits: 4 advanced credits in Chemistry or in Physics

Prerequisites: 60 credits in the Sciences, including General Chemistry1 (or General Chemistry I + General Chemistry II), or Atoms, Molecules and the Properties of Matter 20201; Fundamentals of Physics (or Fundamentals of Physics I + Fundamentals of Physics II; or Mechanics + Electricity and Magnetism + Waves and Optics); Differential and Integral Calculus I (or Infinitesimal Calculus I); Quantum Theory I (or Quantum Mechanics and Atomic Structure or Modern Physics). Students must also fulfill all English requirements and take bibliographic instruction in the Library.

Recommended: Chemical Kinetics, Molecular Dynamics of Chemical Processes

The course is based on chapters from Laser Chemistry: Spectroscopy, Dynamics and Applications, by H.H. Telle, A.G. Ureña, and R.J. Donovan (John Wiley & Sons, 2007). The materials include a study guide and a lab guide prepared by Igor Rahinov.

The aim of this course is to expose students to the basic principles of laser operation, and to a wide range of laser-based methods used in modern basic and applied research; To provide students with knowledge about laser-based techniques routinely used in spectroscopic analysis, molecular dynamics, photochemistry and photophysics, analytical, environmental and industrial applications.

Chapters: 1. Introduction; 2. Atoms and molecules, and their interaction with light waves; 3. The basics of lasers; 4. Laser systems; 5. General concepts of laser spectroscopy; 6. Absorption spectroscopy; 7. Laser-induced fluorescence spectroscopy; 8. Light scattering methods: Raman spectroscopy and other processes; 9. Ionization spectroscopy; 10. Reflection, refraction and diffraction; 11. Filters and thin-film coatings; 12. Optical fibres; 13. Analysis instrumentation and detectors; 14. Signal processing and data acquisition; 15. Photodissociation of diatomic molecules.

In addition, students study an advanced laser application, chosen by the course coordinator from among chapters 16-30 (e.g. intra- and bimolecular processes in the gas phase, cluster science and gas-surface interactions, environmental, analytical, industrial and bio-medical applications). The topic is announced before the beginning of the semester.

1or General Chemistry (20477 or 20487), which is no longer offered.