Resonance fluorescence from large molecules

Abraham Nitzan*, Joshua Jortner

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In this paper we apply the T matrix formalism of scattering theory to derive general expressions for the absorption cross sections, the cross sections for resonance fluorescence and the emission quantum yields from large molecules in the statistical limit. In the simple case of an isolated molecular resonance both the absorption line shape and the photon scattering cross section exhibit a Lorentzian distribution on the photon energy, the emission quantum yields are distributed among the ground state vibronic levels according to their radiative widths and, most important, the emission quantum yields are independent of the photon energy and of the spectral width of the exciting light. We were able to derive general expressions for the resonance scattering from a pair of overlapping resonances, including radiative corrections to infinite order. The absorption cross section does not vanish in the region of destructive interference but assumes a finite value which depends on the radiative widths. A sharp maximum in the partial and in the total emission quantum yields is exhibited in the destructive interference regions. This general scheme was applied to a pair of zero order discrete states, one of which is optically active, which interact with an optically inactive quasicontinuum. The energy dependent quantum yield depends on the total width of the radiatively impotent state and may exhibit a minimum. We have demonstrated that when interference effects are involved the decay characteristics of this system will differ for coherent and for narrow band excitation. The general formalism was utilized to derive approximate relations for the resonance fluorescence cross sections and for the quantum yield in the case of a Fano absorption line shape which are valid away from the interference region. Finally, we have applied the general theoretical scheme to the case of the direct photodissociation spectrum of molecules. We have demonstrated that a finite energy dependent emission quantum yield will be observed when a molecule is optically pumped into a dissociative continuum.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2870-2889
Number of pages20
JournalThe Journal of Chemical Physics
Issue number7
StatePublished - 1972


Dive into the research topics of 'Resonance fluorescence from large molecules'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this