Coherent THz Spectrometry in Chemistry and Biology
Terahertz radiation is defined by the frequency range of 0.1 to 10 THz (1 THz equals 1 trillion cycles per second) and interest in its application to the medical, pharmaceutical and biological sciences has grown in the last decade.
QMUL Antennas and EM group's work in this domain is aiming to explore the response of chemical systems to THz radiation, especially at high intensities, with the hope of permanently influencing these materials, as an example. By exposing certain chemical materials to high intensity THz radiation, we hope to influence the design and synthesis of such materials, thereby enhancing the synthetic chemist’s toolkit. In recognition of the Antennas Group's achievements in this domain, QMUL has been able to support the research group through the College Infrastructure Fund (CIF), with an investment of £1m for the refurbishment of the Antenna Measurement Laboratory and the establishment of a new Terahertz Laboratory, completed in early 2011. This Laboratory is one of the most comprehensive antenna measurement facilities in a European University.
National and International Collaborations
- University of Regensburg (THz Science and Technology, faculty of Physics, Prof. Sergey Ganichev)
- Materials Science Research Institute, Department of Oral Diagnostics, Semmelweis University, Budapest 1088, Hungary (Prof. Csaba Dobó-Nagy & Dr. Kun-Viviana Tian)
- St Petersburg Ioffe Institute, Russian Academy of Sciences (Profs. Pavel Belov, Mikhail Khodorkovskiy)
- The Center for Electromagnetic Research and Characterization, The Applied Physics Department (Dr. Paul Ben-Ishai)
- China (Xiamen)
- Centre Lead - Professor of Cutaneous Biology, Blizard Institute (Prof. Philpott Centre Lead - Professor of Cutaneous Biology)
- Dr. Greg Chass, Prof. Richard Pickersgill (QMUL), school of Biological and Chemical Sciences
- UCL, Leeds, Cavendish (http://www.terahertzsystems.org/news – Alwyn Seeds et al)
- University of Reading (Dr. Silas Hajiloucas)
- STFC, Rutherford Appleton Laboratory, Didcot, (MMT Group)
- Thomas Keating Ltd (Dr. Richard Wylde)
- MediWise Ltd, 42 New Road London, (George Palikaras & Dr. Themos Kallos)
Internal and External Collaborating Investigators working in the Domain
- QMUL (Prof. Richard Pickersgill (SBCS), Prof. Mike Reece and Dr. Tina Chowdhury (SEMS);
- NPL (Dr. Richard Dudley and Dr. Mira Naftaly);
- Reading (Dr. Silas Hadjiloucas, Dr. John Bowen);
- Imperial (Prof. Norbert Klein);
- Sheffield (Dr. Robert Falconer)
- Ruhr-Universität Bochem, Germany (Prof. Martina Havenith);
- Philipps University Marburg, Germany (Prof. Martin Koch)
- Technical University of Denmark (Prof. Peter Uhd Jepsen)
- University at Buffalo (Prof. Andrea Markelz)
- University of Adelaide (Prof. Derek Abbott)
- University of Wollongong (Prof. Roger Lewis)
Highlights and Research Outcomes
- Royal Society of Chemistry, Recent Advances in Spectroscopy at Terahertz Frequencies, 31st Oct. 2013, RSC Thomas Graham House, Science Park, Milton, Cambridge
- Workshop and Short courses, Introduction to Advanced Measurement Techniques for Material Characterization, EuMW Nuremburg, September, 2013
- Biophotonics, Millimeter Wave and THz Metrology in Material, Biological and Chemical Sciences, Glasgow 2013
- IoP, Dielectrics 2013, University of Reading, May 2013
- Invited talk at PIERS, Stockholm August 2013
- School of Electronic Engineering Seminar, UCL, May 2012, THz metrology for biological study of proteins and bacterial spores.
- Advances in Photonics Tools for The Life Sciences, Imperial College on 26th April, 2012
- Plenary Session Talk; International Conference on Antenna Theory and Technique (ICATT'11), Kiev, September, 2011
- Plenary Session Talk; International meeting - Loughborough Antennas and Propagation Conference (LAPC), November 2010, THz Observational Science for Molecular Structural Biology.
- RF-assisted chemistry - the chemistry programme and its Terahertz research facilities of ALICE (Dr Donnan collaboration with Prof Peter Weigthman, Liverpool, Physics).
- News mention under the 'news' in UK THz Day Presentations at the Cavendish Lab (http://www.terahertzsystems.org/).
Selected Research Grants and Projects
- 2013 EPSRC EP/K038125/1 Active Quasi-Optics for High Power THz Science £465,158
- 2011 MoD/KTA: Coherent THz Spectroscopy for the Rapid Detection and Characterisation of Bacterial Spores, £90,000 , April 2011 – April 2012
- 2010 EPSRC (Chemistry Bright IDEAS Award – Dial-a-Molecule EP/IO14845/1), £243,985 for “Selective activation of chemical bonds by active coherent THz spectrometry”, Awarded August 2010, January 2011 – June 2012
- 2010 - MoD/KTA Scheme 3: Mapping of Volatile Organic Compounds, EP/H500162/1, £73,660 , January – April 2010
- 2008 – EPSRC (Pump-Priming Award) EP/F033133/1, £9,500 for “Submillimetre wave studies of biological water”, Drs. R. S. Donnan and Tina Chowdhury (SEMS).
- 2008 EPSRC (Bridging the Gaps) £10,000 pump-priming funding for “Dispersive Fourier Transform Spectroscopy applied to the study of protein dynamics”, Drs. R. S. Donnan and Tina Chowdhury (SEMS).
Selected Recent Publications
- Jianhua Tang, Bin Yang, Ian Llewellyn, Ronald R Cutler, Robert S Donnan, “Bacillus Spores and Their Relevant Chemicals Studied by Terahertz Time Domain Spectroscopy”, Chemical Physics Letter, Accepted December 2013
- Sushko, Oleksandr; Dubrovka, Rostyslav; Donnan, Robert, “Terahertz spectral domain computational analysis of the hydration shell of proteins with increasingly complex tertiary structure”, J. Phys. Chem B, to appear in publication DOI: 10.1021/jp407580y
- Yi wang, Bin Yang, Yingtao Tian, Robert S. Donnan and Michael J. Lancaster, “Micromachined thick-mesh filters for millimeter-wave and terahertz applications”, accepted for publication in IEEE Transaction on Terahertz Science and Technology, 10 Dec. 2013
- Sun, Wenfeng; Yang, Bin; Wang, Xinke; Zhang, Yan; Donnan, Robert, “Accurate determination of THz optical constants by vector network analysis of Fabry-Perot response”, Optics Letters, Vol. 38 Issue 24, pp.5438-5441 (2013)
- Sushko, Oleksandr; Shala, Kastriot; Dubrovka, Rostyslav; Donnan, Robert, “Revised metrology for enhanced accuracy in complex optical constant determination by THz-time-domain spectrometry”, JOSA A, Vol. 30 Issue 5, pp.979-986 (2013)
- McIntosh AI, Yang B, Goldup SM, Watkinson M, Donnan RS “Crystallization of Amorphous Lactose at High Humidity Studied by Terahertz Time Domain Spectroscopy”, Chemical Physics Letters 558 (2013) 104–108.
- Invited Tutorial Review Paper: McIntosh AI, Yang B, Goldup SM, Watkinson M, Donnan RS, “Terahertz spectroscopy: a powerful new tool for the chemical sciences”, Chem. Soc. Rev. 05 Jan. 2012, pp. 2072 – 2082, DOI: 10.1039/C1CS15277G
- Yang B, Zhou M, Kingravi A, Donnan RS “Reassessment of the Electromagnetic Reflection-Response of Human Skin at W-band”, Optics Letters 36(21), pp. 2072 – 2082, 2011, Article number Doc. ID 147024.
- Yang B, Su Hm Liu X, Shala K, Donnan R, “Complex Permittivity of Pure Water Measured by Vector Network Analysis at W-Band”, Journal of Physics 286 (1), 2011, Article number 012005