We are a group of experimental physicist based in Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, located at the shore of the Arabian Sea in Mumbai. We are currently involved in studying various aspects of the interaction betweeen ions as well as electrons with different species ranging from simple atoms & molecules, such as H2, He etc. to molecules as big as C60 and Uracil...
As a primary method of probing the molecules and atoms, we use highly charged ions (HCI) from a 14.5 GHz Electron Cyclotron Resonance based Ion Source (ECRIS) in our own laboratory. Also, our institute runs a state-of-art facility, namely the 14 MV Pelletron tandem accelerator, which, also, provides ions, with suitable high energies and charge states required for our experiments.
Some of our experimental techniques include a Hemi-spherical electron energy analyzer for measuring doubly differential cross-section for atomic & molecular collisional processes, a Time of Flight (ToF) mass spectrometer for studying ionization & fragmentation of large molecules in collision with ions and a Bent Crystal Spectrometer to look for X-rays from atomic transitions at a very high resolution. Besides, at present, we are making a Recoil Ion Momentum Spectroscope (RIMS) along with a Toroidal Analyzer for experimenting with clusters as well as very large protein molecules.
Our group did pioneering works in measuring Young-type interference arising from H2 molecule. Also, another important scientific result was detecting the effect of collective response on electron capture and excitation in collisions of highly charged ions with Fullerenes. This further led to the study of Giant Dipole Plasmon Resonance (GDPR) for C60 clusters in collision with ions. At this moment, one of our main goals is to look for these effects in case of newer systems. Besides, we have recently suceeded in determining the plasma temparature inside the ECRIS, which could serve as a prototype for astrophysical plasma.