During my five years of scientific research, my main interest was the study of light–matter interactions in organic materials.

If you're interested in this, you can visit my google scholar profile. If you want more information, or crave for more technical details, please feel free to download my PhD thesis (89 MB).

The focus of my PhD thesis, titled "Polaritonic chemistry", is the manipulation of chemical processes and properties of organic molecules strongly coupled to confined electromagnetic modes.

Polaritonic chemistry

Polaritonic chemistry is an emergent interdisciplinary field in which the strong interaction of organic molecules with the electromagnetic field is exploited in order to manipulate the chemical structure and reactions of the system. In this strong coupling regime, the interaction with the electromagnetic vacuum oblige us to redefine the concept of the molecule.

The picture above is an idealized representation of a typical experiment where organic molecules are embedded inside of an optical microcavity. This can greatly enhance the interaction between the molecules and the electromagnetic field, impacting the molecular energy structure, represented as some energy surfaces in the zoom.

My thesis builds on the foundations of chemistry and quantum electrodynamics in order to provide a satisfactory theoretical framework to describe these organic light-matter hybrids. By fully embracing the structural complexity of molecules, this theory allows to employ long-established quantum chemistry methods to understand polaritonic chemistry. This leads to predictions of substantial structural changes in organic molecules and the possibility of significantly influencing chemical reactions both in the excited and ground states of the system.


Plasmonic nanocavities enable self-induced electrostatic catalysis (PDF)
C. Climent, J. Galego, F. J. García-Vidal, and J. Feist
Angew. Chem. Int. Ed., 10.1002/anie.201901926 (2019)
Cavity Casimir-Polder forces and their effects in ground state chemical reactivity (PDF)
J. Galego, C. Climent, F. J. García-Vidal, and J. Feist
Phys. Rev. X 9, 021057 (2019)
Polaritonic chemistry with organic molecules (PDF)
J. Feist, J. Galego, and F. J. García-Vidal
ACS Photonics 5, 205 (2018)
Many-molecule reaction triggered by a single photon in polaritonic chemistry (PDF)
J. Galego, F. J. García-Vidal, and J. Feist
Phys. Rev. Lett. 119, 136001 (2017)
Editors' Suggestion with accompanying Viewpoint in Physics Research Highlight at Nature
Suppressing photochemical reactions with quantized light fields (PDF)
J. Galego, F. J. García-Vidal, and J. Feist
Nat. Commun. 7, 13841 (2016)
Cavity-induced modifications of molecular structure in the strong-coupling regime (PDF)
J. Galego, F. J. García-Vidal, and J. Feist
Phys. Rev. X 5, 041022 (2015)


Education at Universidad Autónoma de Madrid

  • PhD in Condensed Matter Physics, Nanoscience and Biophysics (cum laude)
2014 – 2019
Polaritonic chemistry. Supervisors: Johannes Feist and Francisco J. García-Vidal
  • Master's degree in Condensed Matter Physics
  • 2013 – 2014
    Research project: Frustration of collective pairing for resonantly coupled microcavity polaritons. Supervisor: Francesca M. Marchetti
  • Five-year degree
  • 2008 – 2013

    Presented talks

  • Invited talk at PIERS 2018 Toyama
  • 2018
  • Seminar at Universidad Autónoma de Madrid
  • 2017
  • Talk at INC 2016 – Young Researchers Meeting XIX
  • 2016
  • Talk at Nanoscale Quantum Optics Conference
  • 2015
  • Seminar at Universidad Autónoma de Madrid
  • 2015

    Conference posters

  • SCOM18 – Eindhoven
  • 2018
  • INC 2017 – Young Researchers Meeting XX
  • 2017
  • SCOM16 – Donostia / San Sebastián
  • 2016
    • Conference on Surface Plasmon Photonics 7 – Jerusalem
  • INC 2014 – Young Researchers Meeting XVII
  • 2014

    Other merits

    • Springer Theses prize Springer Theses prize "Recognizing Outstanding Ph.D. Research"
  • Postgraduate scholarship for research training
  • 2013 – 2014
    Project: Bose Einstein Condensates of cold atoms and polaritons. Supervisor: Carlos Tejedor