Design of molecular switches exhibiting second-order nonlinear optical responses: ab initio investigations and hyper Rayleigh scattering characterizations

  • Aurélie Plaquet

Student thesis: Doc typesDoctor of Sciences


Molecular switches are compounds presenting the ability to commute reversibly between two or more states in response to external stimuli. The goal of the work is the design of molecular switches exhibiting contrasts of their second-order nonlinear optical (NLO) properties and the highlight of the structural and electronic parameters leading to large contrasts of first hyperpolarizability (β) via a multidisciplinary approach combining the synthesis of new compounds, the characterization of their linear (by UV-Visible absorption spectroscopy) and nonlinear optical properties (by hyper Rayleigh scattering), and the theoretical simulations in order to predict and interpret molecular properties. These reversible switching processes and the resulting variations of molecular properties have many interests in technological area such as the development of molecular computers or in life sciences since many biological functions are based on commutation mechanisms. The major results of our investigations are the interpretation of the NLO responses and contrasts as a function of the nature, the positioning, and the donor/acceptor character of the substituents.
Date of Award31 May 2011
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • University of Namur
SupervisorBenoit CHAMPAGNE (Supervisor), Davide BONIFAZI (President), Frédéric Castet (Co-Supervisor), Vincent Rodriguez (Jury), Michel Sliwa (Jury) & Koen Clays (Jury)

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