The Interactions of Particles and Matter (IPM) group studies the out-of-equilibrium dynamics of molecular aggregates under irradiation. Molecular aggregates are present in the Earth’s atmosphere as well as in the astrophysical context. To observe the interactions between molecules under extreme conditions, i.e. at low temperature and subjected to radiation, provides access to the first stages of the formation of atmospheric aerosols as well as the formation of the prebiotic molecules necessary for the appearance of living organisms.

To observe the processes involved at this nanometer scale, the team has built the DIAM (Molecular Aggregate Irradiation Device) platform at IP2I. This highly accurate “drip by drip” allows us to observe, nanodroplet by nanodroplet, the thermalisation that follows irradiation, with repetition allowing us to carry out
statistical analyses. These nanodroplets are small model systems composed of a controlled number of molecules of interest. The first experiments on pure water nanodroplets led to the discovery of high-speed evaporation of molecules before complete thermalization in the nanodroplet.

DIAM is thus a probe of the nanoscale thermalisation mechanisms underlying phenomena observed on a global scale.

The activities of the IPM group focus on the study of thermalization in a nanogout within the framework of projects developed at the DIAM platform and carried out in collaboration with the LIphy of Grenoble (Interdisciplinary Physics Laboratory), the LGL-TPE (Geology Laboratory of Lyon – Terre Planète Environnement), the Institute “fĂĽr Ionenphysik und Angewandte Physik” of the University of Innsbruck and the Laboratory “Atomic and Molecular Physics” of RIKEN.

  • Thermalization in a nanodrop of pure water
  • Thermalization in a nanodrop of water doped with a pyridine molecule
  • Thermalization in a methanol nanodrop
  • Response of radiosensitizers to different types of radiation
  • DIAM Platform
  • DIAM Nanodroplet bundles
  • DIAM Protons
  • DIAM Cryostat
  • Training through Research