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Valter Zazubovits, Ph.D.

Associate Professor, Physics
Graduate Program Director, Physics

Valter Zazubovits, Ph.D.
Office: L-SP 365-8 
Richard J. Renaud Science Complex,
7141 Sherbrooke W.
Phone: (514) 848-2424 ext. 5050
Website(s): Research Group Webpage
Advising FAQ


Postdoctoral Fellow (Ames Laboratory, USDOE and Iowa State University; 1999-2005)
Ph.D. (University of Tartu, Estonia; 1999)

Research interests

  • Renewable energy: Optical spectroscopy of pigment-protein light-harvesting photosynthetic complexes - energy transfer and charge transfer.
  • Biophotonics / Protein structure and [low-temperature] dynamics - Protein-chlorophyll complexes as model systems. Heat transfer in proteins and through protein-water interfaces. Energy landscapes and dynamics in amorphous solids.
  • Biosensors for explosives detection utilizing photosynthetic reaction centers.
  • Combining optical (Raman) and transport measurements in graphene and carbon nanotubes.

Research Group Page

Selected recent publications

Total publication number: 44; h-index: 15

·      Conformational Changes in Pigment-Protein Complexes at Low Temperatures – Spectral Memory and a Possibility of Cooperative Effects, M. Najafi, N. Herascu, G. Shafiei, R.Picorel and V. Zazubovich, J. Phys. Chem. B 119 (2015)6930−6940.

·        Biophotonics of Photosynthesis,  V. Zazubovich and R.Jankowiak; Invited chapter for Photonics: Scientific Foundations,Technology and Applications; D. L. Andrews, Ed.,Vol. 4, Wiley 2015, pp. 129-164.

·       Spectral Hole Burning, Recovery, and Thermocycling in Chlorophyll-Protein Complexes: Distributions of Barriers on the Protein Energy Landscape, M.Najafi, N. Herascu, M. Seibert, R. Picorel, R. Jankowiak, V. Zazubovich, J.Phys. Chem. B 116 (2012) 11780.

·        Site Selective and Single Complex Laser-Based Spectroscopies: A Window on Excited State Electronic Structure, Excitation Energy Transfer, and Electron-Phonon Coupling of Selected Photosynthetic Complexes (Invited Review) , R. Jankowiak, M. Reppert, V.Zazubovich, J. Pieper, T. Reinot, Chem. Rev. 111 (2011) 4546.

·       Detection of Explosive Compounds using Photosystem II-based Biosensor, V.Bhalla, X. Zhao, V. Zazubovich, J. Electroanal. Chem. 657 (2011) 84.

Low-Temperature Protein Dynamics of the B800 Molecules in the LH2 Light-Harvesting Complex: Spectral Hole Burning Study and Comparison with Single Photosynthetic Complex Spectroscopy, D. Grozdanov, N. Herascu, T. Reinot, R.Jankowiak, V. Zazubovich, J. Phys. Chem. B 114 (2010) 3426.

Teaching activities

Academic Advising

Please follow this link to my advising page.

Positions available

Potential graduate students are encouraged to contact me at any time. Please note, however, that application deadline for September start is in February!

A wide variety of projects is available for undergraduate students – whichever your natural inclinations are (or in whichever way you want to challenge yourself) – optical, mechanical,chemical, software-related, or a combination of all of the above – we can find something for you. Have a look at the research page for current research directions and past student projects.


PHYS 205, Electricity and Magnetism
PHYS 252, Optics

PHYS 260, Introductory Biophysics
PHYS367 Relativity and Modern Physics
PHYS377 Quantum Mechanics I
PHYS 679, Optical Spectroscopy

·        SCOL 350, Random Processes

·        PHYS 497 and 496: Please contact me if you are interested in doing an undergraduate research project with me (specialization or honors; I accept Chemistry students as well)


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