TCBG Seminar

Ultrafast Excitation Energy Transfer in the LH1 and LH2 Rings of Photosynthetic Bacteria

Professor Rienk van Grondelle
Department of Biophysics and Physics of Complex Systems
Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam
Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Tuesday, February 13, 2001
11:00 am (CT)
3269 Beckman Institute


In photosynthetic bacteria solar photons are absorbed by a pigments (carotenoids, bacteriochlorophyll) bound to light-harvesting proteins LH1 and LH2 and transferred to a photosynthetic reaction center (RC), where the energy is used to drive a charge separation. Both LH1 and LH2 are composed of a tightly coupled ring of bacteriochlorophylls and energy transfer in these rings occurs on a timescale of a few hundred femtoseconds. One of the major questions that we have tried to answer concerns the nature of the excited state in LH1 and LH2: localized vs. delocalized. In this talk I will describe femtosecond laser experiments that measure the excited state dynamics in these systems and I will discuss their interpretation in terms of a disordered exciton model.

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