Lev Chuntonov

Lev Chuntonov

Assistant Professor
Two-dimensional femtosecond infrared spectroscopy (2D-IR), solvation dynamics, vibrational excitation transfer, plasmonic molecules, single-molecule surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy

Laboratory for multi-dimensional spectroscopy of ultrafast molecular processes

We use sequences of femtosecond (10-15 s) laser pulses to study molecular dynamics in solutions and in confined environments created by biomolecules and nanostructures. The focus is on the ultrafast structural changes in molecules due to the fluctuating forces applied by the solvent and on the transport of excitation created by laser pulses along the inter- and intra-molecular relaxation pathways.

Our main methodology is the state-of-the-art two-dimensional vibrational spectroscopy (2D-IR) where we impulsively excite selected vibrational modes of the molecule and track their ultrafast relaxation into different vibrational modes, into the modes of an interacting partner molecule, and dissipation into the solvent. Spreading the spectral information in two dimensions allows to reveal the correlations between molecular motions, and to resolve congested spectra arising from multiple molecular conformations. At the same time, the instrument response of our 2D-IR apparatus is fast enough to resolve different relaxation dynamics of these conformations and their inter-conversion kinetics. The figure below schematically summarizes how the four-pulse 2D-IR experiments are conducted.

Our studies of vibrational dynamics aim to provide atomistic details of molecular interactions, help to understand mechanisms of intra- and inter-molecular signaling, guide development of the efficient hybrid nanoparticle-molecule transducers, and reveal plethora of new and exciting phenomena!

Candidates at all levels interested in our research are encouraged to contact Lev Chuntonov.

Schematic drawing of a nonlinear spectroscopic measurement

Post doc: Department of Chemistry, University of Pennsylvania, 2012-2014; Department of Chemical Physics, Weizmann Institute of Science, 2009-2012

Ph.D: Schulich Faculty of Chemistry, Technion – ITT, 2009

  1. L. Chuntonov, “2D-IR spectroscopy of hydrogen-bond-mediated vibrational excitation transfer”, Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys. 18, 13852 (2016)
  2. K. Santhosh, O. Bitton, L. Chuntonov, G. Haran, “Vacuum Rabi splitting in a plasmonic cavity at the single quantum emitter limit”, Nature Communications 7, 11823 (2016).
  3. L. Chuntonov and J. Ma, “Quantum Process Tomography Quantifies Coherence Transfer Dynamics in Vibrational Exciton”, J. Phys. Chem. B 117, 13631 (2013).
  4. L. Chuntonov, D. Kuroda, A. Ghosh, J. Ma, and R. M. Hochstrasser, “Quantum Beats and Coherence Decay in Degenerate States Split by Solvation”, J. Phys. Chem. Lett. 4, 1866 (2013).
  5. L. Chuntonov and G. Haran, “Optical activity in single-molecule surface-enhanced Raman scattering: Role of symmetry”, MRS Bulletin 38, 642 (2013).