The addition of circular or, more generally, elliptical polarization state detection to fast optical absorption spectroscopy can increase the amount of electronic and nuclear conformational information obtained about transient molecular species. To accomplish this, fast circular dichroism methods have emerged over the past decade that overcome the millisecond limit on time resolution associated with conventional modulation techniques and enable structural studies of excited states and kinetic intermediates. This article reviews techniques for time-resolved natural and magnetic circular dichroism spectroscopy covering the picosecond to millisecond time regimes and their applications, with particular emphasis on quasi-null ellipsometric techniques for nanosecond multichannel measurements of circular dichroism. Closely related quasi-null polarimetric techniques for nanosecond optical rotatory dispersion and linear dichroism measurements are also discussed.


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  • Article Type: Review Article
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