Current activities

See our publications page and a current-ish CV


Various non-Illinois folks who have put up with me over the years (professional list only!!)

Tsinghua University, Senior Visiting Scholar, 2011-2012

Beijing is awesome! I got to hang out with ZHANG Qiang and his group at the Center for Earth System Science as well as the HE Kebin group.

NCAR Visiting Scientist, 2002-2003

I did some chemical/transport modeling with the Climate & Global Dynamics Division of the National Center for Atmospheric Research, working with Phil Rasch. I also worked with Tad Anderson at the University of Washington.

NOAA Climate & Global Change Postdoctoral Fellow, NOAA/PMEL, 2000-2002

I worked with the Atmospheric Chemistry group at NOAA’s Pacific Marine Environmental Laboratories—especially on the ACE-Asia project, with Trish Quinn and Tim Bates. I burned a few things—mostly coal— and analyzed the smoke in a variety of ways (source characterization).

Interdisciplinary Ph.D., University of Washington, 2000

Dissertation Title: Light Absorption by Primary Particles from Fossil-Fuel Combustion: Implications for Radiative Forcing
In plain English: When you burn fuel, why does it make smoke, what does the smoke look like, and how does it affect the amount of sunlight entering the Earth system? I measured particles from a lot of burning things, using instruments that are usually applied to particles in the atmosphere. “Interdisciplinary” means that I had professors from three departments on my committee: Dr. Timothy Larson (Civil Engineering); Dr. Robert Charlson (Atmospheric Sciences), Dr. John Kramlich and Dr. Philip Malte (Mechanical Engineering). I can also explain what possessed me to do an interdisciplinary Ph.D. I am indebted to the National Science Foundation and the Hertz Foundation for graduate fellowships, without which none of this unfunded research would have been possible.

M.S. Mechanical Engineering, University of California at Berkeley, 1995

Thesis Title: Experimental and Numerical Investigations of the Catalytic Oxidation of Natural Gas
In plain English: Fuel can burn by reacting on a solid, instead of reacting as gas molecules. In that way, you can avoid making some of the pollutants that are usually made in flames. I did some preliminary work on setting up a catalytic reactor and measuring and modeling the progress of the reaction in Robert Dibble's Combustion Analysis Laboratory. I really liked burning things, and I had a great advisor and wonderful labmates. Alas, I became fascinated with the environmental implications of combustion, so I moved on.

B.S. Mechanical Engineering, University of Washington, 1993

I had a great time in the thermo-fluids-systems side of M.E., and I met the people who would later serve on my Ph.D. committee. I would have gotten a Chemistry minor if such a thing had existed at the time.

While I was an undergraduate, I did research on indoor air quality and air leakage in residential buildings at Ecotope, Inc., a small Seattle consulting company. Larry Palmiter was instrumental in training me not only as a researcher but as a scholar.

RIP, Larry.


I have 2 brothers, 4 sisters, 2 parents, and 2 teenage daughters. Fortunately, only one husband. My favorite place to work is anywhere but the office, preferably in proximity to coffee and music.

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