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In this thesis, simulations of laser-driven many-electron dynamics in molecules are presented, i.e., the interaction between molecules and an electromagnetic field is demonstrated. When a laser field is applied to a molecular system, a population of higher electronic states takes place as well as other processes, e.g. photoionization, which is described by an appropriate model. Also, a finite lifetime of an excited state can be described by such a model. In the second part, a method is postulated that is capable of describing electron correlation in a time-dependent scheme. This is done by introducing a single-electron entropy that is at least temporarily minimized in a further step.

In this paper, we report simulations of laser-driven many-electron dynamics by means of the time-dependent configuration interaction singles (TD-CIS) approach. Photoionization is included by a heuristic model within calculations employing standard Gaussian basis sets. Benzo[g]-N-methyl-quinolinium-7-hydroxylate (BMQ7H) serves as a test system to generate predefined wave packets, i.e. a superposition between the ground and fifth excited state, in a large molecule. For this molecule, these two states have a very similar geometry, which enables us to use the fixed nuclei approximation. Furthermore, this geometric stability would also prevent a dephasing of the electron wave packet due to nuclear dynamics in an experimental realization of our simulations. We also simulate the possible detection of such a wave packet by ultra short probe laser pulses, i.e. pump-probe spectra.

In this paper, we perform many-electron dynamics using the time-dependent configuration-interaction method in its reduced density matrix formulation (rho-TDCI). Dissipation is treated implicitly using the Lindblad formalism. To include the effect of ionization on the state-resolved dynamics, we extend a recently introduced heuristic model for ionizing states to the rho-TDCI method, which leads to a reduced density matrix evolution that is not norm-preserving. We apply the new method to the laser-driven excitation of H(2) in a strongly dissipative environment, for which the state-resolve lifetimes are tuned to a few femtoseconds, typical for dynamics of adsorbate at metallic surfaces. Further testing is made on the laser-induced intramolecular charge transfer in a quinone derivative as a model for a molecular switch. A modified scheme to treat ionizing states is proposed to reduce the computational burden associated with the density matrix propagation, and it is thoroughly tested and compared to the results obtained with the former model. The new approach scales favorably (similar to N(2)) with the number of configurations N used to represent the reduced density matrix in the rho-TDCI method, as compared to a N(3) scaling for the model in its original form.

In this paper, we report simulations of laser-driven many-electron dynamics by means of the time-dependent configuration interaction singles (TD-CIS) approach. The method is capable of describing explicitly time-dependent phenomena beyond perturbation theory and is systematically improvable. In contrast to most time-dependent density functional methods it also allows us to treat long-range charge-transfer states properly. As an example, the laser-pulse induced charge transfer between a donor (ethylene) and an acceptor molecule (tetracyanoethylene, TCNE) is studied by means of TD-CIS. Also, larger aggregates consisting of several donors and/or acceptors are considered. It is shown that the charge distribution and hence the dipole moments of the systems under study are switchable by (a series of) laser pulses which induce selective, state-to-state electronic transitions.

We report simulations of laser-pulse driven many-electron dynamics by means of a simple, heuristic extension of the time-dependent configuration interaction singles (TD-CIS) approach. The extension allows for the treatment of ionizing states as nonstationary states with a finite, energy-dependent lifetime to account for above-threshold ionization losses in laser-driven many-electron dynamics. The extended TD-CIS method is applied to the following specific examples: (i) state-to-state transitions in the LiCN molecule which correspond to intramolecular charge transfer, (ii) creation of electronic wave packets in LiCN including wave packet analysis by pump-probe spectroscopy, and, finally, (iii) the effect of ionization on the dynamic polarizability of H-2 when calculated nonperturbatively by TD-CIS.