Prof. Filipp U. Furche

Contact Information

University of California, Irvine
2135 Natural Sciences II
Mail Code: 2025
Irvine, CA 92697

(949) 824-5051

Professor of Chemistry [Ph.D. in Chemistry, Universität Karlsruhe (TH)]. Professor Furche brings his theory expertise, particularly in electronic structure, to apply to the complex systems found in the atmosphere and in biological systems.

The goal of research in his group is to develop new electronic structure methods and to apply them to chemistry. Many successful theoretical concepts in chemistry share the following characteristics: (i) They provide useful accuracy at a reasonable price, (ii) they are robust, i.e., applicable to a variety of different systems and properties. The Furche group uses these criteria to select, develop, and improve electronic structure methods.

A focus is on efficient algorithms for molecular property calculations. Such calculations are needed to decode the complex spectroscopic information provided by the ORU's experimental groups and relate them to molecular structure. In particular, the Furche group aims to control the explosion of computational cost for larger systems which severely limits traditional electronic structure methods. For example, excited state structures and emission energies of molecules with well over 100 atoms can be computed with an efficient analytical excited state gradient implementation that was recently developed in Furche's lab and is based on time-dependent density functional theory (TDDFT). Other properties of interest to the ORU's experimental groups include (non-)linear optical properties, e.g. polarizabilities, Raman intensities, chiroptical properties such as circular dichroism (CD), and vibrational spectra. These developments are made available through the TURBOMOLE quantum chemistry package.

Often, Furche's methods allow pioneering applications to systems and properties that were not accessible before. For example, the photoexcited states of 4-(dimethylamino)benzonitrile causing its unusual dual fluorescence were assigned by Furche and co-workers for the first time using TDDFT calculations. Within the ORU, such methods will be applied to study photochemical reactivity and excited state dynamics of atmospheric contaminants in close collaboration with experimental and other theoretical groups.

Research Interests: 
  • Theoretical and Computational Chemistry
Selected Honors and Awards: 
Fellow, German National Academic Foundation (Studienstiftung des deutschen Volkes), 1995
Chemical Society of Karlsruhe graduation Award, 1998
Dr. Otto Röhm Memorial Foundation Award, 2003
Heinz Maier- Leibnitz Prize of the German Research Foundation (DFG), 2004
Appointed to The Young Academy (Die Junge Akademie), 2006
Dozentenstipendium of the German Chemical Industry Fund, 2007 (awarded up to five excellent young scientists per year)
LiseMeitner-Minerva Outstanding Young German Scientist Award, 2008
Dirac Medal of the World Association of Theoretical and Computational Chemists, 2013
Early-Career Award in Theoretical Physical Chemistry, 2014
UCI Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Fostering Undergraduate Research, 2017