potential energy


Demonstration of conical pathway for potential energy transition from cis to trans rhodopsin with sub 20 femto second optical microscopy from optical to near infrared.

The paper describes a spectroscopic probing of the boundary between quantum mechanical and molecular descriptions of rhodopsin as it undergoes the first 200 femtoseconds of transition from a cis three-dimensional configuration (conformation) to a trans conformation. Roughly one third of the molecules fail to remain as the trans isomer. The experimental set up homes in on the known torsional critical point in rhodopsin and compares theoretical numerical analysis predictions with experimental spectroscopic observations of the absorption and emission spectra of the ground and excited states in response to sub 7, 10 and 13 femtosecond pulses at visible and near infrared wavelengths. Remove the word sub in the previous sentence. It is a typo.

Based on a paper out of embargo 23.9.10 published in Nature. Conical intersection dynamics of the primary photoisomerization event in vision by D. Polli et al.

GavaghanCommunications Snippets of science Helen Gavaghan©