Special Issue "Chirality Detection"

A special issue of Symmetry (ISSN 2073-8994). This special issue belongs to the section "Chemistry and Symmetry/Asymmetry".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 May 2022 | Viewed by 203

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Emil Zak
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Center for Free-Electron Laser Science, Deutsches Elektronen-Synchrotron DESY, Notkestraße 85, 22607 Hamburg, Germany
Interests: tailored electromagnetic fields; controlled molecular motions; high-accuracy spectroscopy and imaging

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Chirality is prevalent in the natural environment. Systems of biological significance more often than not exist in two enantiomeric (mirror-image) forms, which are non-superimposable by rotations and translations in space. Dating back to Pasteur, there has been a long and formidable history of methods for determining the absolute handedness of chemicals and the enantiomeric excess in mixtures of chiral compounds.

Several modernly expanded techniques for studying chirality have already had a paramount impact on chemistry, biology, and medicine. Circular dichroism spectroscopy, microwave three-wave mixing, Coulomb explosion, especially combined with COLTRIMS (cold target recoil ion momentum spectroscopy), or modern table-top experiments utilizing the photo-electron circular dichroism are only a few out of many methods used to probe chirality in gas phase molecules.

The rapid development of femtosecond and attosecond laser technology have allowed probing even deeper into the realm where molecular chirality emerges—on the timescale of electronic motions. We therefore may at least consider pondering on the non-static nature of chirality, studying which has recently become a laboratory reality. This exciting time, in which the experiment tentatively reaches into the molecular frame of chiral molecules at (sub-)femtosecond and (sub-)angstroms resolution, must bring new insights and discoveries.

The past two decades have witnessed a pursuit in theoretical methods as well, which, parallel to the experiment, aim at underpinning the nature of chirality by proposing ever new and more sensitive probes of chirality. Some of the theoretical methods present a significant computational challenge, which triggers algorithmic developments in quantum calculations.

We welcome theoretical as well as experimental contributions covering concepts and techniques not only for measuring the enantiomeric excess in mixtures of chiral molecules, but also approaches to discriminate chiral species, separate them, or unravel the role of nuclear and electronic motion in interacting chiral systems.

Dr. Emil Zak
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Symmetry is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1800 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • molecular chirality
  • enantiomeric excess
  • light–matter interaction
  • ultrafast imaging
  • chirality sensitive techniques
  • chiral discrimination

Published Papers

This special issue is now open for submission.
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