Atomic, Molecular, and Optical Sciences

The DOE AMOS program is focused on fundamental, hypothesis-driven research in ultrafast chemical sciences. The program supports basic experimental and theoretical research aimed at understanding the structural and dynamical properties of atomic and molecular systems. The research targets fundamental interactions of photons and electrons with atomic and molecular systems to characterize and control their behavior. The program aims to develop accurate quantum mechanical descriptions of dynamical processes such as charge migration and transfer, chemical bond breaking and forming, and interactions in strong fields, where electron-electron and electron-nuclei correlations are important. Topics of interest include the development and use of novel, ultrafast optical probes of matter; the interactions of atoms and molecules with intense electromagnetic fields; and control of quantum coherence/decoherence and entanglement in molecular systems. 

The knowledge and techniques produced by this research area form a science base that underpins several aspects of the DOE mission. New methods for using photons, electrons, and ions to probe matter lead to scientifically impactful use of BES synchrotron, free-electron laser, ultrafast electron diffraction, nanoscience, and microcharacterization facilities. Similarly, the study of formation and evolution of excited states in atoms, and molecules and investigations of ultrafast charge transfer provides a fundamental basis for understanding elementary processes in solar energy conversion and radiation-induced chemistry.

To obtain more information about this research area, please see the proceedings of our Principal Investigators' Meetings. To better understand how this research area fits within the Department of Energy's Office of Science, please refer to the Basic Energy Science's organization chart and budget request.

For more information about this research area, please contact Dr. Thomas Settersten.