The understanding of function of biomolecules like DNA and phospholipids requires knowledge of the ultrafast dynamics on the femto- to picosecond time scale of molecular motions due to fluctuating electric fields and hydrogen bonding.

Two-dimensional infrared (2D IR) spectroscopy offers chemical selectivity with a (sub-)100 fs time resolution allowing to study these phenomena in real time.

We have recently introduced the phosphate ion H2PO4 as a model system to study ultrafast phosphate dynamics combining two advantages:
(i) interfacial sensitivity of phosphate stretching vibrations allowing for direct observation of phosphate-water interactions in bulk H2O
(ii) small molecular structure making them tractable for realistic state of the art simulations.

  • Mechanism of DNA-Lesion Formation and Repair:
  • Electron Transfer in Bacterial Reaction Centers and Biomimetic Artificial Devices: