讲座题目：Chirality Recognition, Transfer, and Amplification in Molecular Clusters and with Quantum Plasmons
Our research program focuses on applying and developing new spectroscopic tools to investigate chiral molecules in the gas phase, solution, cold rare gas matrices and at the liquid-liquid interfaces. Our goal is to establish mechanism of chirality recognition/transfer/amplification at the molecular level. Using chirped-pulse Fourier transform microwave (CP-FTMW) spectroscopy, we examined conformational landscapes and chirality recognition of chiral acids and alcohols and their aggregates in a supersonic jet expansion. By applying vibrational circular dichroism (VCD) and Raman optical activity (ROA), we probed how chiral molecules interact with themselves and with solvent molecules in solution. In particular, I will discuss the observation of the induced VCD features of achiral solvents and the “clusters-in-a-liquid” approach for simulating VCD and ROA spectra in water and in other protic solvents. Most recently, we proposed a new quantum plasmonic chirality transfer and amplification mechanism to explain the enormous induced solvent ROA features observed under resonance condition.
Yunjie Xu is a full professor and Tier I (Senior) Canada Research Chair in Chirality and Chirality Recognition in the Chemistry Department at the University of Alberta. Her research focuses characterizing chirality and chiral recognition/transfer/amplification/ at the molecular level. Her group not only applies vibrational circular dichroism, Raman optical activity, and rotational spectroscopy but also develops new IR-mass spectrometry techniques to study chirality related processes in the gas phase, in solution, and at the liquid-liquid interfaces. She has published 150 refereed articles in leading scientific journals including Science, Angew. Chem. Int. Ed., J. Am. Chem. Soc., J. Phys. Chem. Lett. and Phys. Rev. Lett. She has received many awards and honors including 2014 International Dr. Barbara Mez-Starck Prize for outstanding contributions in the field of experimental structural chemistry and molecular physics, 2015 International Mercator Fellowship from University of Freiburg, Germany, 2016 Clara Benson Award from Canadian Society for Chemistry, and 2019 Gerhard Herzberg Award from Canadian Society for Analytical Sciences and Spectroscopy. She was elected to the Fellowship of the Royal Society of Canada, Academy of Science in 2018.