Control of chemical dynamics by lasers: Theoretical considerations

Alexey Kondorskiy, Shinkoh Nanbu, Yoshiaki Teranishi, Hiroki Nakamura*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

11 Scopus citations


Theoretical ideas are proposed for laser control of chemical dynamics. There are the following three elementary processes in chemical dynamics: (i) motion of the wave packet on a single adiabatic potential energy surface, (ii) excitation/de-excitation or pump/dump of wave packet, and (iii) nonadiabatic transitions at conical intersections of potential energy surfaces. A variety of chemical dynamics can be controlled, if we can control these three elementary processes as we desire. For (i) we have formulated the semiclassical guided optimal control theory, which can be applied to multidimensional real systems. The quadratic or periodic frequency chirping method can achieve process (ii) with high efficiency close to 100%. Concerning process (iii) mentioned above, the directed momentum method, in which a predetermined momentum vector is given to the initial wave packet, makes it possible to enhance the desired transitions at conical intersections. In addition to these three processes, the intriguing phenomenon of complete reflection in the nonadiabatic-tunneling-type of potential curve crossing can also be used to control a certain class of chemical dynamics. The basic ideas and theoretical formulations are provided for the above-mentioned processes. To demonstrate the effectiveness of these controlling methods, numerical examples are shown by taking the following processes: (a) vibrational photoisomerization of HCN, (b) selective and complete excitation of the fine structure levels of K and Cs atoms, (c) photoconversion of cyclohexadiene to hexatriene, and (d) photodissociation of OHCl to O + HCl.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)6171-6187
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Physical Chemistry A
Issue number21
StatePublished - 3 Jun 2010

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