Renee Frontiera

I began working as a postdoc in the Van Duyne group in September 2010, after receiving my PhD in December 2009 from University of California-Berkeley. There I worked with Richard Mathies using Femtosecond Stimulated Raman Spectroscopy to examine ultrafast structural snapshots of chemical reaction dynamics in proteins and photovoltaics.  I was also a lecturer teaching upper-level biophysical chemistry. I grew up in Madison, WI and majored in Chinese linguistics and chemistry at Carleton College in Northfield, MN. I’m a fan of traveling, playing hockey (Go Tigers!), sunshine, farmer’s markets, and the great Chicago beer scene.

I am interested in developing techniques to probe chemical reactions on their natural length (nanometer) and time (femtosecond) scales.  The ultimate goal is to generate a “molecular movie” of the atomic motions of a single molecule undergoing a structural change.  Currently I am working on combining ultrafast laser techniques with surface and and tip enhanced spectroscopies, in order to monitor plasmonically enhanced reactions and to examine molecule-plasmon coupling effects.

As of July 2013, Renee will be an Assistant Professor at the University of Minnesota.  Check out her website here:


Curriculum Vitae

Recent publications:

Frontiera, R. R., Henry, A.-I., Gruenke, N. L., and Van Duyne, R. P., “Surface Enhanced-Femtosecond Stimulated Raman Spectroscopy”, The Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters, 2, 1199-1203, 2011.

Frontiera, R. R., Fang, C., Dasgupta, J., and Mathies, R. A. “Structural evolution along multiple degrees of freedom with femtosecond stimulated Raman spectroscopy”, Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics, 14, 405-414, 2012.

Frontiera, R. R., and Mathies, R. A. “Femtosecond Stimulated Raman Spectroscopy”, Laser and Photonics Reviews, 5, 1, 102-113, 2011.

Frontiera, R. R., Dasgupta, J., and Mathies, R. A. “Probing Interfacial Electron Transfer in Coumarin 343 Sensitized TiO2 Nanoparticles with Femtosecond Stimulated Raman”, Journal of the American Chemical Society, 131, 43, 15630-15632, 2009.

Fang, C., Frontiera, R. R., Tran, R., and Mathies, R. A. “Femtosecond Raman reveals torsional dynamics that gate excited-state proton transfer in GFP”, Nature, 462, 7270, 200, 2009.

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  • Professor Richard Van Duyne

    Additional Information

    Discoverer of Surface-enhanced Raman Spectroscopy (1977)
    Inventor of Nanosphere Lithography (1995) & Localized Surface Plasmon Resonance Spectroscopy (2000)

  • Group Members

    Professor Van Duyne has, in his career to date, advised a total of 87 graduate students and 47 postdoctoral fellows. Every year, Professor Van Duyne gives a talk to introduce new graduate students to our research. The 2017 seminar slides are available here.

  • News

    Professor Van Duyne was recently named a Vannevar Bush Faculty Fellow by the U.S. Department of Defense to conduct "high risk, high payoff" basic scientific research. Read more here