skip to content

Yusuf Hamied Department of Chemistry


Laser Spectroscopy has revolutionised the determination of molecular structure. The Cambridge Infrared Laser Spectroscopy Group uses a variety of novel laser based techniques to study molecules in situations as diverse as low pressure electric discharges (plasmas) and on surfaces buried under liquids. The shapes of short lived molecules like free radicals and ions are precisely determined using solid state diode lasers in combination with sensitive, species- specific detection methods like Velocity Modulation. Recent diode laser spectroscopy of free radicals has included measurement of the band strength of the methyl radical, CH3. This is required for detection and density measurements of CH3 in the atmospheres of the giant planets Saturn and Neptune. We are now enhancing the sensitivity of IR laser absorption spectroscopy in a fruitful collaboration with German colleagues using a Cavity Ring Down (CRD) spectrometer built around novel Quantum Cascade Lasers. The group is also heavily involved in non linear laser spectroscopy particularly the interface specific technique of Sum Frequency Generation (SFG). We use SFG to gain insight into adsorption at interfaces on a molecular scale e.g. of surfactants and polymers. We use nano and picosecond lasers for SFG in Cambridge and femtosecond SFG to quantify non linear optical effects in Langmuir Blodgett films in a joint project with co-workers in Hokkaido, Japan. The aim is eventually to use SFG to study biological systems like the lung surfactants. In addition to our international projects, which involve overseas visits by our research students, much of our work on surfaces and interfaces is strongly supported by industry.






Nanoscale Molecular Characterization of Hair Cuticle Cells Using Integrated Atomic Force Microscopy-Infrared Laser Spectroscopy
AP Fellows, MTL Casford, PB Davies
– Applied spectroscopy
Using AFM-Nano IR Spectroscopy and Sum-Frequency Generation (SFG) Vibrational Spectroscopy to Investigate Sickle Cell Disease
AP Fellows, MTL Casford, JN Brewin, DC Rees, PB Davies, JS Gibson
– Biophysical Journal
Spectral Analysis and Deconvolution of the Amide I Band of Proteins Presenting with High-Frequency Noise and Baseline Shifts.
AP Fellows, M Casford, P Davies
– Applied spectroscopy
Determining a Line Strength in the ν3 Band of the Silyl Radical Using Quantum Cascade Laser Absorption Spectroscopy
AS Nave, AV Pipa, PB Davies, J Röpcke, J-PH van Helden
– Journal of Physical Chemistry A
A time domain study of surfactin penetrating a phospholipid monolayer at the air-water interface investigated using sum frequency generation spectroscopy, infrared reflection absorption spectroscopy, and AFM-nano infrared microscopy
SA Goussous, AP Fellows, MTL Casford, PB Davies
– Biochim Biophys Acta Biomembr
Structure of the Fundamental Lipopeptide Surfactin at the Air/Water Interface Investigated by Sum Frequency Generation Spectroscopy.
SA Goussous, MTL Casford, AC Murphy, GPC Salmond, FJ Leeper, PB Davies
– The journal of physical chemistry. B
A structural and temporal study of the surfactants behenyltrimethylammonium methosulfate and behenyltrimethylammonium chloride adsorbed at air/water and air/glass interfaces using sum frequency generation spectroscopy.
SA Goussous, MTL Casford, SA Johnson, PB Davies
– Journal of Colloid and Interface Science
Measurement of water vapor pressure and activity using infrared diode laser absorption spectroscopy
– Applied Spectroscopy
Applying quantum cascade laser spectroscopy in plasma diagnostics
J Röpcke, PB Davies, S Hamann, M Hannemann, N Lang, JPH van Helden
– Photonics
The Adsorption of Synovene on ZDDP Wear Tracks: A Sum Frequency Generation (SFG) Vibrational Spectroscopy Study
MTL Casford, PB Davies, TD Smith, GL Bracchi
– Tribology Letters
  • <
  • 2 of 30
  • >

Research Group

Telephone number

01223 336460

Email address