We use ultrafast spectroscopy to investigate the photoreactivity of (bio)organic compounds and nanostructures. Typical processes of interest are photo-electric or photo-mechanical energy conversions at the molecular scale, which have applications in material science (e.g. photovoltaic devices, nanomachines), and are also exploited in biological systems (photosynthesis, vision). From the physical point of view, these processes rely on ultrafast, photoinduced energy and charge transfer or ultrafast photoinduced isomerization reactions in organic molecules interacting with their environment (solution, functional organic film, protein, etc…). We implement non-linear, femtosecond UV-Vis spectroscopy to investigate the mechanisms of such ultrafast processes.
Besides, the environment-sensitive photoreactivity of organic compounds may be exploited to probe local interactions in biomolecules. Hence one of our contributions to biophysics resides in exploiting time-resolved spectroscopy to unravel biomolecular structures or interactions.
Overmore, our biophysical research activity also focuses on the cellular or organism scales. To this end, we also develop microscopy and micromanipulation schemes (e.g. optical tweezers) to probe cell adhesion in the context of development biology or tumor progression.