## Institut für Physik und Astronomie

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In this paper two groups supporting different views on the mechanism of light induced polymer deformation argue about the respective underlying theoretical conceptions, in order to bring this interesting debate to the attention of the scientific community. The group of Prof. Nicolae Hurduc supports the model claiming that the cyclic isomerization of azobenzenes may cause an athermal transition of the glassy azobenzene containing polymer into a fluid state, the so-called photo-fluidization concept. This concept is quite convenient for an intuitive understanding of the deformation process as an anisotropic flow of the polymer material. The group of Prof. Svetlana Santer supports the re-orientational model where the mass-transport of the polymer material accomplished during polymer deformation is stated to be generated by the light-induced re-orientation of the azobenzene side chains and as a consequence of the polymer backbone that in turn results in local mechanical stress, which is enough to irreversibly deform an azobenzene containing material even in the glassy state. For the debate we chose three polymers differing in the glass transition temperature, 32 °C, 87 °C and 95 °C, representing extreme cases of flexible and rigid materials. Polymer film deformation occurring during irradiation with different interference patterns is recorded using a homemade set-up combining an optical part for the generation of interference patterns and an atomic force microscope for acquiring the kinetics of film deformation. We also demonstrated the unique behaviour of azobenzene containing polymeric films to switch the topography in situ and reversibly by changing the irradiation conditions. We discuss the results of reversible deformation of three polymers induced by irradiation with intensity (IIP) and polarization (PIP) interference patterns, and the light of homogeneous intensity in terms of two approaches: the re-orientational and the photo-fluidization concepts. Both agree in that the formation of opto-mechanically induced stresses is a necessary prerequisite for the process of deformation. Using this argument, the deformation process can be characterized either as a flow or mass transport.

A novel atomic beam splitter, using reflection of atoms off an evanescent light wave, is investigated theoretically. The intensity or frequency of the light is modulated in order to create sidebands on the reflected de Broglie wave. The weights and phases of the various sidevands are calculated using three different approaches: the Born approximation, a semiclassical path integral approach, and a numerical solution of the time-dependent Schrdinger equation. We show how this modulated mirror could be used to build practical atomic interferometers.

Compared to their inorganic counterparts, organic semiconductors suffer from relatively low charge carrier mobilities. Therefore, expressions derived for inorganic solar cells to correlate characteristic performance parameters to material properties are prone to fail when applied to organic devices. This is especially true for the classical Shockley-equation commonly used to describe current-voltage (JV)-curves, as it assumes a high electrical conductivity of the charge transporting material. Here, an analytical expression for the JV-curves of organic solar cells is derived based on a previously published analytical model. This expression, bearing a similar functional dependence as the Shockley-equation, delivers a new figure of merit α to express the balance between free charge recombination and extraction in low mobility photoactive materials. This figure of merit is shown to determine critical device parameters such as the apparent series resistance and the fill factor.

Fixational eye movements show scaling behaviour of the positional mean-squared displacement with a characteristic transition from persistence to antipersistence for increasing time-lag. These statistical patterns were found to be mainly shaped by microsaccades (fast, small-amplitude movements). However, our re-analysis of fixational eye-movement data provides evidence that the slow component (physiological drift) of the eyes exhibits scaling behaviour of the mean-squared displacement that varies across human participants. These results suggest that drift is a correlated movement that interacts with microsaccades. Moreover, on the long time scale, the mean-squared displacement of the drift shows oscillations, which is also present in the displacement auto-correlation function. This finding lends support to the presence of time-delayed feedback in the control of drift movements. Based on an earlier non-linear delayed feedback model of fixational eye movements, we propose and discuss different versions of a new model that combines a self-avoiding walk with time delay. As a result, we identify a model that reproduces oscillatory correlation functions, the transition from persistence to antipersistence, and microsaccades.

In Allefeld & Kurths [2004], we introduced an approach to multivariate phase synchronization analysis in the form of a Synchronization Cluster Analysis (SCA). A statistical model of a synchronization cluster was described, and an abbreviated instruction on how to apply this model to empirical data was given, while an implementation of the corresponding algorithm was (and is) available from the authors. In this letter, the complete details on how the data analysis algorithm is to be derived from the model are filled in.

A method for the multivariate analysis of statistical phase synchronization phenomena in empirical data is presented. A first statistical approach is complemented by a stochastic dynamic model, to result in a data analysis algorithm which can in a specific sense be shown to be a generic multivariate statistical phase synchronization analysis. The method is applied to EEG data from a psychological experiment, obtaining results which indicate the relevance of this method in the context of cognitive science as well as in other fields.

We investigate the ensemble and time averaged mean squared displacements for particle diffusion in a simple model for disordered media by assuming that the local diffusivity is both fluctuating in time and has a deterministic average growth or decay in time. In this study we compare computer simulations of the stochastic Langevin equation for this random diffusion process with analytical results. We explore the regimes of normal Brownian motion as well as anomalous diffusion in the sub- and superdiffusive regimes. We also consider effects of the inertial term on the particle motion. The investigation of the resulting diffusion is performed for unconfined and confined motion.

We present a semiclassical perturbation method for the description of atomic diffraction by a weakly modulated potential. It proceeds in a way similar to the treatment of light diffraction by a thin phase grating, and consists in calculating the atomic wavefunction by means of action integrals along the classical trajectories of the atoms in the absence of the modulated part of the potential. The capabilities and the validity condition of the method are illustrated on the well-known case of atomic diffraction by a Gaussian standing wave. We prove that in this situation the perturbation method is equivalent to the Raman-Nath approximation, and we point out that the usually-considered Raman-Nath validity condition can lead to inaccuracies in the evaluation of the phases of the diffraction amplitudes. The method is also applied to the case of an evanescent wave reflection grating, and an analytical expression for the diffraction pattern at any incidence angle is obtained for the first time. Finally, the application of the method to other situations is briefly discussed.

We introduce azobenzene-functionalized polyelectrolyte multilayers as efficient, inexpensive optoacoustic transducers for hyper-sound strain waves in the GHz range. By picosecond transient reflectivity measurements we study the creation of nanoscale strain waves, their reflection from interfaces, damping by scattering from nanoparticles and propagation in soft and hard adjacent materials like polymer layers, quartz and mica. The amplitude of the generated strain ε ∼ 5 × 10−4 is calibrated by ultrafast X-ray diffraction.

Herein, we report the chain-growth tin-free room temperature polymerization method to synthesize n-type perylene diimide-dithiophene-based conjugated polymers (PPDIT2s) suitable for solar cell and transistor applications. The palladium/electron-rich tri-tert-butylphosphine catalyst is effective to enable the chain-growth polymerization of anion-radical monomer Br-TPDIT-Br/Zn to PPDIT2 with a molecular weight up to Mw ≈ 50 kg mol−1 and moderate polydispersity. This is the second example of the polymerization of unusual anion-radical aromatic complexes formed in a reaction of active Zn and electron-deficient diimide-based aryl halides. As such, the discovered polymerization method is not a specific reactivity feature of the naphthalene-diimide derivatives but is rather a general polymerization tool. This is an important finding, given the significantly higher maximum external quantum efficiency that can be reached with PDI-based copolymers (32–45%) in all-polymer solar cells compared to NDI-based materials (15–30%). Our studies revealed that PPDIT2 synthesized by the new method and the previously published polymer prepared by step-growth Stille polycondensation show similar electron mobility and all-polymer solar cell performance. At the same time, the polymerization reported herein has several technological advantages as it proceeds relatively fast at room temperature and does not involve toxic tin-based compounds. Because several chain-growth polymerization reactions are well-suited for the preparation of well-defined multi-functional polymer architectures, the next target is to explore the utility of the discovered polymerization in the synthesis of end-functionalized polymers and block copolymers. Such materials would be helpful to improve the nanoscale morphology of polymer blends in all-polymer solar cells.

We consider synchronization properties of arrays of spin-torque nano-oscillators coupled via an RC load. We show that while the fully synchronized state of identical oscillators may be locally stable in some parameter range, this synchrony is not globally attracting. Instead, regimes of different levels of compositional complexity are observed. These include chimera states (a part of the array forms a cluster while other units are desynchronized), clustered chimeras (several clusters plus desynchronized oscillators), cluster state (all oscillators form several clusters), and partial synchronization (no clusters but a nonvanishing mean field). Dynamically, these states are also complex, demonstrating irregular and close to quasiperiodic modulation. Remarkably, when heterogeneity of spin-torque oscillators is taken into account, dynamical complexity even increases: close to the onset of a macroscopic mean field, the dynamics of this field is rather irregular.

Complementarity in single photon interference – the role of the mode function and vacuum fields
(2017)

Background
In earlier experiments the role of the vacuum fields could be demonstrated as the source of complementarity with respect to the temporal properties (Heuer et al., Phys. Rev. Lett. 114:053601, 2015).
Methods
Single photon first order interferences of spatially separated regions from the cone structure of spontaneous parametric down conversion allow for analyzing the role of the mode function in quantum optics regarding the complementarity principle.
Results
Here the spatial coherence properties of these vacuum fields are demonstrated as the physical reason for complementarity in these single photon quantum optical experiments. These results are directly connected to the mode picture in classical optics.
Conclusion
The properties of the involved vacuum fields selected via the measurement process are the physical background of the complementarity principle in quantum optics.

Based on extensive Monte Carlo simulations and analytical considerations we study the electrostatically driven adsorption of flexible polyelectrolyte chains onto charged Janus nanospheres. These net-neutral colloids are composed of two equally but oppositely charged hemispheres. The critical binding conditions for polyelectrolyte chains are analysed as function of the radius of the Janus particle and its surface charge density, as well as the salt concentration in the ambient solution. Specifically for the adsorption of finite-length polyelectrolyte chains onto Janus nanoparticles, we demonstrate that the critical adsorption conditions drastically differ when the size of the Janus particle or the screening length of the electrolyte are varied. We compare the scaling laws obtained for the adsorption–desorption threshold to the known results for uniformly charged spherical particles, observing significant disparities. We also contrast the changes to the polyelectrolyte chain conformations close to the surface of the Janus nanoparticles as compared to those for simple spherical particles. Finally, we discuss experimentally relevant physico-chemical systems for which our simulations results may become important. In particular, we observe similar trends with polyelectrolyte complexation with oppositely but heterogeneously charged proteins.

We study the adsorption–desorption transition of polyelectrolyte chains onto planar, cylindrical and spherical surfaces with arbitrarily high surface charge densities by massive Monte Carlo computer simulations. We examine in detail how the well known scaling relations for the threshold transition—demarcating the adsorbed and desorbed domains of a polyelectrolyte near weakly charged surfaces—are altered for highly charged interfaces. In virtue of high surface potentials and large surface charge densities, the Debye–Hückel approximation is often not feasible and the nonlinear Poisson–Boltzmann approach should be implemented. At low salt conditions, for instance, the electrostatic potential from the nonlinear Poisson–Boltzmann equation is smaller than the Debye–Hückel result, such that the required critical surface charge density for polyelectrolyte adsorption σc increases. The nonlinear relation between the surface charge density and electrostatic potential leads to a sharply increasing critical surface charge density with growing ionic strength, imposing an additional limit to the critical salt concentration above which no polyelectrolyte adsorption occurs at all. We contrast our simulations findings with the known scaling results for weak critical polyelectrolyte adsorption onto oppositely charged surfaces for the three standard geometries. Finally, we discuss some applications of our results for some physical–chemical and biophysical systems.

In this paper we report an experimental and computational study of liquid acetonitrile (H3C–C[triple bond, length as m-dash]N) by resonant inelastic X-ray scattering (RIXS) at the N K-edge. The experimental spectra exhibit clear signatures of the electronic structure of the valence states at the N site and incident-beam-polarization dependence is observed as well. Moreover, we find fine structure in the quasielastic line that is assigned to finite scattering duration and nuclear relaxation. We present a simple and light-to-evaluate model for the RIXS maps and analyze the experimental data using this model combined with ab initio molecular dynamics simulations. In addition to polarization-dependence and scattering-duration effects, we pinpoint the effects of different types of chemical bonding to the RIXS spectrum and conclude that the H2C–C[double bond, length as m-dash]NH isomer, suggested in the literature, does not exist in detectable quantities. We study solution effects on the scattering spectra with simulations in liquid and in vacuum. The presented model for RIXS proved to be light enough to allow phase-space-sampling and still accurate enough for identification of transition lines in physical chemistry research by RIXS.

In order to investigate the temporal characteristics of cognitive processing, we apply multivariate phase synchronization analysis to event-related potentials. The experimental design combines a semantic incongruity in a sentence context with a physical mismatch (color change). In the ERP average, these result in an N400 component and a P300-like positivity, respectively. The synchronization analysis shows an effect of global desynchronization in the theta band around 288ms after stimulus presentation for the semantic incongruity, while the physical mismatch elicits an increase of global synchronization in the alpha band around 204ms. Both of these effects clearly precede those in the ERP average. Moreover, the delay between synchronization effect and ERP component correlates with the complexity of the cognitive processes.

The plasmon resonance of metal nanoparticles determines their optical response in the visible spectral range. Many details such as the electronic properties of gold near the particle surface and the local environment of the particles influence the spectra. We show how the cheap but highly precise fabrication of composite nanolayers by spin-assisted layer-by-layer deposition of polyelectrolytes can be used to investigate the spectral response of gold nanospheres (GNS) and gold nanorods (GNR) in a self-consistent way, using the established Maxwell–Garnett effective medium (MGEM) theory beyond the limit of homogeneous media. We show that the dielectric function of gold nanoparticles differs from the bulk value and experimentally characterize the shape and the surrounding of the particles thoroughly by SEM, AFM and ellipsometry. Averaging the dielectric functions of the layered surrounding by an appropriate weighting with the electric field intensity yields excellent agreement for the spectra of several nanoparticles and nanorods with various cover-layer thicknesses.

Diffusion of finite-size particles in two-dimensional channels with random wall configurations
(2014)

Diffusion of chemicals or tracer molecules through complex systems containing irregularly shaped channels is important in many applications. Most theoretical studies based on the famed Fick–Jacobs equation focus on the idealised case of infinitely small particles and reflecting boundaries. In this study we use numerical simulations to consider the transport of finite-size particles through asymmetrical two-dimensional channels. Additionally, we examine transient binding of the molecules to the channel walls by applying sticky boundary conditions. We consider an ensemble of particles diffusing in independent channels, which are characterised by common structural parameters. We compare our results for the long-time effective diffusion coefficient with a recent theoretical formula obtained by Dagdug and Pineda [J. Chem. Phys., 2012, 137, 024107].

Recombination of free charge is a key process limiting the performance of solar cells. For low mobility materials, such as organic semiconductors, the kinetics of non-geminate recombination (NGR) is strongly linked to the motion of charges. As these materials possess significant disorder, thermalization of photogenerated carriers in the inhomogeneously broadened density of state distribution is an unavoidable process. Despite its general importance, knowledge about the kinetics of NGR in complete organic solar cells is rather limited. We employ time delayed collection field (TDCF) experiments to study the recombination of photogenerated charge in the high-performance polymer:fullerene blend PCDTBT:PCBM. NGR in the bulk of this amorphous blend is shown to be highly dispersive, with a continuous reduction of the recombination coefficient throughout the entire time scale, until all charge carriers have either been extracted or recombined. Rapid, contact-mediated recombination is identified as an additional loss channel, which, if not properly taken into account, would erroneously suggest a pronounced field dependence of charge generation. These findings are in stark contrast to the results of TDCF experiments on photovoltaic devices made from ordered blends, such as P3HT:PCBM, where non-dispersive recombination was proven to dominate the charge carrier dynamics under application relevant conditions.

Effects of the target aspect ratio and intrinsic reactivity onto diffusive search in bounded domains
(2017)

We study the mean first passage time (MFPT) to a reaction event on a specific site in a cylindrical geometry—characteristic, for instance, for bacterial cells, with a concentric inner cylinder representing the nuclear region of the bacterial cell. Asimilar problem emerges in the description of a diffusive search by a transcription factor protein for a specific binding region on a single strand of DNA.We develop a unified theoretical approach to study the underlying boundary value problem which is based on a self-consistent approximation of the mixed boundary condition. Our approach permits us to derive explicit, novel, closed-form expressions for the MFPT valid for a generic setting with an arbitrary relation between the system parameters.Weanalyse this general result in the asymptotic limits appropriate for the above-mentioned biophysical problems. Our investigation reveals the crucial role of the target aspect ratio and of the intrinsic reactivity of the binding region, which were disregarded in previous studies. Theoretical predictions are confirmed by numerical simulations.