Ultrafast Raman Spectroscopy of Shock Fronts in Molecular Solids

Guray Tas, Jens Franken, Selezion A. Hambir, David E. Hare, Dana D. Dlott

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The passage of a 4 GPa shock front through an embedded optical nanogauge, a thin (∼700 nm) layer of polycrystalline molecular material (anthracene), is monitored in real time by picosecond coherent Raman scattering. Analysis of high resolution Raman spectra shows the shock rise time is less than 25 ps, and the front is less than 100 molecules wide. The rise time is faster than relaxation of nonequilibrium populations of molecular vibrations, which shows a shock front in a molecular material can leave highly nonequilibrium vibrational states in its wake. The implications for shock initiation of energetic materials, typically polycrystalline molecular solids, are briefly discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4585-4588
Number of pages4
JournalPhysical review letters
Issue number24
StatePublished - Jun 16 1997

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy(all)


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