The DCP brings together physicists and chemists with a particular focus on advances enabled by the close interplay between theory and experiment. The division explores the fundamental concepts of how chemistry and material properties and dynamics emerge from basic building blocks, atoms, molecules, electrons, and photons. It covers a diverse range of disciplines, extending from gas and liquid phase spectroscopies of molecular dynamics, molecular astrophysics, the development and application of innovative spectroscopy and imaging techniques, to the fundamental physics and chemistry underpinning emergent solutions to energy and climate challenges, including novel solar light harvesting concepts, catalysis, and electrochemistry. Cutting-edge theory and computational efforts are elemental to DCP’s activities.

Throughout his tenure in the chair line, Gessner’s responsibilities include the organization of the DCP component of the APS March Meeting program, interfacing with journals, appointing members of various DCP committees, presiding at executive committee and business sessions, communicating with the DCP membership, and providing leadership to any new initiatives the division wishes to pursue. Click here to view all APS DCP Executive Committee Members.

Gessner’s research focuses on electronic and nuclear dynamics underlying fundamental photochemical and light capture mechanisms in molecules, clusters, and interfacial systems. His group studies these dynamics by means of ultrafast x-ray spectroscopy and imaging techniques, as well as ultrafast electron diffraction. He received a number of awards, including an Early Career Research Program Award of the DOE Office of Science in 2012, an LBNL Director’s Award for Exceptional Scientific Achievement in 2014, and induction as a Fellow of the American Physical Society in 2015.