California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA
2006 Ph.D. in Environmental Science and Engineering
2002 M.S. in Environmental Science and Engineering
Thesis Title: Column Abundances of Carbon Dioxide and Methane Retrieved From Ground-Based Near-Infrared Solar Spectra
Advisor: Prof. Paul Wennberg
Pomona College, Claremont, CA
1999 B.A. in Chemistry, Magna Cum Laude
Thesis Title: Studies in the Kinetics of Cross Metathesis Using Grubbs' Ruthenium Catalyst
Advisor: Prof. Daniel O'Leary
2017 - Present: Research Chemist at National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Boulder, CO
2016 - 2017: Research Scientist III at University of Colorado (CIRES) and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
2010 - 2016: Research Scientist II at University of Colorado (CIRES) and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
2007 - 2010: Research Scientist I at University of Colorado (CIRES) and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
- Developed a new field instrument to measure absorption and concentration of water-soluble organic aerosol
- Measured biomass burning emissions at the Fire Sciences Laboratory in Missoula, Montana
- Developed a new method to determine aerosol refractive indices as a function of wavelength.
- Collaborated with Weizmann Institute scientists to measure refractive indices of organic aerosol.
- Developed and deployed a new field instrument to measure aerosol optical extinction during SOAS 2013.
- Developed instrumental method for laboratory measurements of atmospheric glyoxal.
- Designed and constructed field instrument for glyoxal and nitrous acid.
- Used field instrument and models to quantify glyoxal contribution to aerosol during CalNex 2010.
- Developed and published new cavity ring-down method for ambient ozone measurements.
- Analyzed urban air pollution data acquired during the TexAQS2006 field campaign.
- Mentored undergraduate, graduate, and post-doctoral students.
2006 - 2007: National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Boulder, CO
National Academies Postdoctoral Fellow
Advisor: Dr. Thomas Ryerson
- Operated the Whole Air Sampler during the 2006 TexAQS aircraft field campaign.
- Evaluated three instrumental techniques for elemental mercury measurements.
2000 - 2006: California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA
Graduate Research Assistant
- Constructed an automated solar observatory to measure column abundances of greenhouse gases.
- Installed the observatory in Wisconsin and acquired sixteen month data record of CO2 and CH4.
- Completed and published an instrumental intercomparison of CO2 measurements.
- Developed and published a method to retrieve CH4 tropospheric column-average concentrations.
- Supervised the construction of two additional observatories located in the U.S. and Australia.
1999 - 2000: National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Boulder, CO
Professional Research Assistant
Supervisor: Dr. Charles Brock
- Participated in two aircraft field campaigns measuring aerosol size distribution and chemical
- Completed subsequent data analysis of particle growth in the plumes of coal-fired power plants.
- Assembled, tested, and deployed an optical white light particle counter for aircraft measurements.
1998 - 1999 Undergraduate Thesis Work at Pomona College, Claremont, CA
1998 Summer Undergraduate Research Fellow at Caltech, Pasadena, CA
Senior Thesis Research, Department of Chemistry
Advisor: Prof. Daniel O'Leary
- Used GC-MS and NMR to investigate the kinetics of olefin metathesis reactions.
GRANTS AND CONTRACTS
2015-2018 Murphy, D. M, C. A. Brock, S. S. Brown, and R. A. Washenfelder, “Does Mie theory correctly describe the near-UV optical properties of smoke?”, NASA Earth Sciences Research Program, $488,217
2012 Washenfelder, R. A. Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers, $50,000.
2010 Vaida, V., C. J. Young, R. A. Washenfelder, and G. J. Frost, Measurements of Weak Absorptions by O3 and O3-H2O Clusters using Cavity Enhanced Spectroscopy, $29,850.
2008 Brown, S. S. and R. A. Washenfelder, The Next Generation of Optical Instrumentation to Further NOAA Research in Air Quality and Climate, NOAA Assistant Administration's Discretionary Fund, $57,500.
HONORS AND AWARDS
2014 Selected to attend the Kavli Frontiers of Science Symposium; National Academy of Sciences, Irvine, CA
2014 Colorado Governor's Award for High-Impact Research; Governor's Office, State of Colorado
2013 Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers; Office of Science and Technology Policy, Office of the President, Washington D. C.
2008, 2009 Best Presentation from NOAA and CIRES Chemical Sciences; Boulder Postdoctoral Poster Symposium, Boulder, CO
2006 - 2007 National Research Council Postdoctoral Fellowship; The National Academies, Washington D.C.
2000 - 2004 Gordon Moore Graduate Fellowship; California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA
2000 - 2003 National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship; National Science Foundation, Washington D.C.
2000 - 2001 Vito Vanoni Graduate Fellowship; California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA
1999 John Stauffer Prize for Academic Merit in the Sciences; Pomona College, Claremont, CA
1999 Frank Parkhurst Brackett, Jr. and Davida Wark Brackett Prize in Chemistry; Pomona College, Claremont, CA
1999 Honorable Mention in Interdisciplinary Contest in Modeling (COMAP); The Consortium for Mathematics and its Applications, Lexington, MA
1999 Phi Beta Kappa Honor Society and Sigma Xi Scientific Research Society
1998 - 1999 Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship; Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Foundation, Springfield, VA
1998 Undergraduate Award in Analytical Chemistry; American Chemical Society, Division of Analytical Chemistry, Washington D.C.
1994 National Science Scholar, 4th Congressional District; National Science Scholars Program, Secretary of Education, Washington D.C.
1994 National Merit Scholar and Scholarship Recipient; National Merit Scholarship Corporation, Evanston, IL
REFEREED JOURNAL ARTICLES
See Publications list.