Professor Rubtsov's Group

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Rubtsov Group

                                                 Rubtsov Group 2017

Rubtsov Group
                                                  Rubtsov Group 2013



Group Announcements


Research projects for undergraduate and graduate students

1. “Spectroscopic 2DIR characterization of various molecular systems.”

Description: Our laboratory recently developed the first fully automated 2DIR spectrometer featuring unprecedented sensitivity and versatility (press release: The project is directed at developing a database of 2DIR spectra of various compounds relating them to 3D structures.

2. “Surface-enhanced 2DIR spectroscopy with the help of plasmonic arrays.” (Supported by Binational Science Foundation, US-Israel)
Description:  Traditional 2DIR spectroscopy requires samples of at least several micron thick (100 micron is typical). To study monolayers of a sample at a surface, we develop surface-enhanced 2DIR spectroscopy. The signal enhancement is achieved with the help of specially designed gold nano arrays manufactured lithographically on a surface. We have shown that 2DIR spectra can be measured for 10 Angstrom thick samples, supported by the enhancement that exceeds 1.5x105. The project is developing rapidly (one manuscript has been published in 2017 and two are under preparation). The project involves manufacturing nanostructures and measuring 2DIR spectra. A student with background in engineering/physics is needed.

3. “2DIR spectroscopy combined with electrochemistry.” (Supported by Louisiana Board of Regents)
Description:  Understanding structural changes associated with redox processes is the objective of the project.  New instrument is under construction which is capable of measuring 2DIR spectra in the electrochemical cell.  Allosteric control, molecular binding equilibria, and catalytic activities are targeted.

4. “Development of nano material with desired thermal conductivity properties.” (NSF supported, CHE-1462075)
Description:  The development of nanomaterials with desired thermal conductivity properties is important in many areas of science and technology, including molecular electronics. Thermal conductivity of materials depends on a phonon transport regime. The fast ballistic regime results in efficient energy transport, while diffusive transport is slow and thus less efficient. The project targets the development of oligomeric systems with controlled thermal conductivity, including efficient thermal conductors and conductors of desired molecular architecture.

5. “Properties of cell membranes at different depth.” (supported by Lavin Bernick Faculty Fund)
Description:  Alzheimer disease (AD) causes brain dementia and is the third leading cause of death in the United States. While the origin of AD is unknown, there exist many hypotheses. Cell membrane plays an important role in AD.  The project accesses experimentally the properties of cell membranes using specially developed 2DIR probes capable of probing cell membranes at any required depth. Influence of membrane composition and presence of membrane proteins onto the membrane is investigated.

6. “Modulating electron transfer rates with vibrational photons.” (NSF supported, CHE-1565427)
Description:  Electron transfer reactions are important steps in solar-cell operation and many other processes. Finding ways of manipulating electron transfer rates by external stimuli will benefit the overall process of charge separation and solar cell operation. Infrared radiation is used as such stimulus; its influence on the electron injection into the TiO2 nanoparticles is studied.

These projects are at different stages of development; some already resulted in a few publications, others are at the very beginning of their development. Contact Dr. Igor Rubtsov for more details. (last modification: Aug 2017)

Fall 2016

Xiao Li was awarded the Arlo Harris Fellowship award.

Robert Mackin was awarded a Teaching Award.

First year graduate students Zowie Saxman and Junhan Zhou have joined the Rubtsov group!

Undergraduate students Ashton Friend and Oskay Taskin have joined the Rubtsov group!

Joel Leger and Clyde Varner‘s paper “Multi-Mode Heterodyned 5th-Order Infrared Spectroscopy” has been accepted to the Journal of Chemical Physics.

Layla Qasim’s paper “Energy Transport in PEG Oligomers: Contributions of Different Optical Bands” has been accepted to The Journal of Physical Chemistry C.

Summer 2016

Layla Qasim received an award for an outstanding poster presentation at the Vibrational Spectroscopy Gordon Research Conference.

Layla Qasim was elected as Chair of the next Vibrational Spectroscopy Gordon Research Conference.

Layla Qasim and Robert Mackin presented their research at the Vibrational Spectroscopy Gordon Research Conference.

Layla was selected to be the discussion leader for the keynote address at the Vibrational Spectroscopy Gordon Research Conference.




  Congratulations to Clara Nyby who won NSF Graduate Research
  Fellowship to perform "Spectroscopic study of structure-dependent
  energy transport along polymer chains"




  Congratulations to Dr. Gopal Naraharisetty, who received an
  Assistant Professor appointment at the University of Hyderabad



   Poster Winner, Natalia I. Rubtsova with
   Judge Dr. Amit Sharma

   April 2013 Physical Chemistry Division
   Outstanding Student Poster Award was
   presented to Natalia Rubtsova at the 245th
   National ACS Meeting in New Orleans,
   Louisiana, April 7-11, 2013.


    April 2008

    Physical Chemistry Division Outstanding

    Student Poster Award was presented to

    Sriram Gopal Naraharisetty.  The Award

    was presented at the 235th National ACS

    Meeting in New Orleans, Louisiana,

    April 6-10, 2008.



2015 Percival Stern Hall, 6400 Freret Street, New Orleans, LA 70118, 504-865-5573