Seminar Series - Visual comprehension of chemical reactions to nanomachines

20. 3. 2024 - 10:00 

CEITEC, Purkyňova 123, Building S, Meeting room – S2.02 

Prof. Dominik Lugerich 
Yonsei University, Seoul, South Korea 

In contemporary scientific exploration, the advent of aberration-corrected transmission electron microscopy has empowered researchers to capture materials at the atomic level with unparalleled precision. When coupled with high-speed cameras and specialized in situ sample holders, this technology facilitates the real time visual examination of intricate nano-systems.

The utilization of state-of-the-art single-molecule atomic resolution time-resolved electron microscopy (SMART-EM) techniques allows for the visual observation of dynamic events occurring at the smallest scale of matter – molecules and single atoms. However, when delving into this microscopic realm, it becomes imperative to factor in the interactions between the electron beam and the material to accurately interpret the observations. From a macroscopic standpoint, radiolytic processes are reasonably well understood and predominantly considered as undesired destructive side-effects during the imaging process. Nevertheless, these supposedly negative repercussions can also be viewed as synthetic tools, provided that the radiation chemistry at the molecular level is comprehensively understood. Our specific interest lies in bridging microscopic insights with classical chemistry knowledge and exploring their application as valuable tools for chemists.

The forthcoming discussion will center on recent discoveries, verified through visual evidence, elucidating reaction mechanisms influenced by the electron beam, leading to the formation of precise nanostructures. Furthermore, the talk will delve into how these structures are identified, drawing on a compilation of pertinent research findings.1-5

Lastly, we will show how in situ liquid phase TEM can elucidate intricate dynamic processes, such as observed in our developed caged magnetic nanomachine, which incorporates a clutch mechanism, and allows for the controlled force transmission in mechanobiological processes.6 The comprehension of these dynamic nanoscale processes holds paramount importance for advancing applications in nanotechnology, particularly in the development of nanomachines or the construction of assembled superstructures.


1. J. Park et al. Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys. 2024, accepted; 2. H. Hoelzel et al. Nat. Chem. 2023, 15, 1444–1451; 3. T. Shimizu et al. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2022, 144, 9797–9805; 4. D. Liu et al. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. 2022, 119, e2200290119; 5. D. Lungerich et al. ACS Nano 2021, 15, 12804–12814; 6. M. Lin et al. Nat. Nanotechnol. 2024, accepted.