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Personal profile

Research interests

Dave’s current research interests span the interface between physics and chemistry, employing “ultrafast” femtosecond laser techniques to investigate the quantum control of fundamental molecular processes and electronic relaxation dynamics in molecules of biophysical interest. Understanding energy redistribution in biological molecules is clearly important if one is to move from studying simple structure-function relationships in these types of systems to a more complete structure-dynamics-function picture that provides a greater fundamental mechanistic understanding. Quantum control methodologies are of great interest since they represent the beginning of a shift from a regime where molecular dynamics are simply observed towards one where they are actively controlled and this is clearly of profound importance for many areas of physics, chemistry and biology. Dave also has a current collaboration with Prof. Ken McKendrick and Dr Matt Costen within the Chemistry Department at Heriot-Watt. This work focuses on using nanosecond lasers in conjunction with ion-imaging methods to study the dynamics of small molecule photodissociation.

Biography

Dave began his research career at the University of Nottingham, obtaining a PhD for investigations into the dynamics of molecular photoionization under the supervision of Katharine Reid. Following on from this he spent time as a postdoctoral researcher in the groups of Tim Softley at the University of Oxford, investigating the spatial manipulation of Stark shifted atomic Rydberg states, and Arthur Suits at the State University of New York (SUNY), using ion imaging methods for the study of molecular photodissociation.  Prior to his current appointment, Dave was a Visiting Research Fellow at the National Research Council of Canada in Ottawa, working with Albert Stolow. During this time he developed parallel research interests in the use of time-resolved photoelectron spectroscopy as a probe of excited state dynamics in molecules of biological interest and in quantum control methodologies exploiting the non-resonant dynamic Stark effect through the use of intense ultrafast laser pulses. Dave joined Heriot-Watt University as a lecturer in 2007.

Fingerprint Fingerprint is based on mining the text of the person's scientific documents to create an index of weighted terms, which defines the key subjects of each individual researcher.

photoelectrons Physics & Astronomy
excitation Physics & Astronomy
Excited states Chemical Compounds
Photoionization Chemical Compounds
vapor phases Physics & Astronomy
internal conversion Physics & Astronomy
Gases Chemical Compounds
photoionization Physics & Astronomy

Co Author Network Recent external collaboration on country level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots.

Research Output 2000 2019

  • 41 Article
  • 1 Book/Film/Article review
  • 1 Literature review

Dynamics of electronically excited states in the eumelanin building block 5,6-dihydroxyindole

Crane, S. W., Ghafur, O., Cowie, T. Y., Lindsay, A. G., Thompson, J. O. F., Greenwood, J. B., Bebbington, M. W. P. & Townsend, D., 21 Apr 2019, In : Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics. 21, 15, p. 8152-8160 9 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Excited states
vapor phases
internal conversion
pigments
Gases

Ultrafast Molecular Spectroscopy Using a Hollow-Core Photonic Crystal Fiber Light Source

Kotsina, N., Belli, F., Gao, S-F., Wang, Y-Y., Wang, P., Travers, J. C. & Townsend, D., 21 Feb 2019, In : Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters. 10, 4, p. 715-720 6 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Optics and Photonics
Spectrum Analysis
Noble Gases
Light
Styrene

Vacuum ultraviolet excited state dynamics of small amides

Larsen, M. A. B., Sølling, T. I., Forbes, R., Boguslavskiy, A. E., Makhija, V., Veyrinas, K., Lausten, R., Stolow, A., Zawadzki, M. M., Saalbach, L., Kotsina, N., Paterson, M. J. & Townsend, D., 7 Feb 2019, In : The Journal of Chemical Physics. 150, 5, 054301.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access
File
Dimethylformamide
Vacuum
Amides
Photoelectron Spectroscopy
Amines

Time-Resolved Photoelectron Spectroscopy of Nitrobenzene and its Aldehydes

Schalk, O., Townsend, D., Wolf, T. J. A., Holland, D. M. P., Boguslavskiy, A. E., Szöri, M. & Stolow, A., Jan 2018, In : Chemical Physics Letters. 691, p. 379-387 9 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access
File
nitrobenzenes
aldehydes
photoelectron spectroscopy
excitation
vapor phases

Ultraviolet relaxation dynamics in uracil: Time-resolved photoion yield studies using a laser-based thermal desorption source

Ghafur, O., Crane, S. W., Ryszka, M., Bockova, J., Rebelo, A., Saalbach, L., De Camillis, S., Greenwood, J. B., Eden, S. & Townsend, D., 21 Jul 2018, In : Journal of Chemical Physics. 149, 3, 034301.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access
File
Thermal desorption
uracil
Uracil
desorption
Excited states