Here's the latest news from AirUCI — our events, our people, our science.



Monday, January 19, 2015

Dr. Lisa Wingen, AirUCI Project Scientist, is participating in an outreach effort this school year as a "science coach" for a 5th grade teacher at Castille Elementary School in Mission Viejo.  She will act as a resource and assistant for Mrs. Smiggs in implementing science enrichment activities for the class. 
The American Chemical Society (ACS) sent Dr. Wingen a set of free supplies for 4th-6th grade chemistry students in the form of a two-part pH experiment that fit nicely into the classroom's science project on water quality of local lakes and streams.  Along with answering chemistry questions when the teacher or her students have them, Dr. Wingen has also enrolled in the ACS Ambassadors Program which encourages chemists to help local communities to understand science concepts more deeply.  She will use the resources from this program also to assist Mrs. Smiggs in her classroom.

Monday, January 19, 2015

As a former student and postdoc for AirUCI Director Barbara Finlayson-Pitts and Co-Director John Hemminger, Astronaut Tracy Caldwell Dyson is a great friend to AirUCI.  She flew aboard the Space Shuttle Endeavour to the International Space Station in 2007 and spent nearly six months aboard the ISS in 2010, where she performed three successful space walks totaling nearly 24 hours of EVA time.
She has kindly presented three public lectures sponsored by AirUCI — in 2007, 2011, and 2014 — all at the Beckman Auditorium and all to overflow crowds.  She is now engaged in projects that represent new NASA initiatives, one of which is a program entitled "StationLife" which tells about life aboard the ISS.  Tracy hosted the January 11, 2015 episode of the show, which focused on nutrition in space and how what we learn there translates to improvements in nutrition here on Earth.
We're so proud of Tracy and all her accomplishments, and she is a marvelous spokeswoman for NASA and for science in general!
View StationLife: Nutrition with Tracy as host
View the print program for her 2014 AirUCI public presentation


Thursday, December 18, 2014

AirUCI Co-Director and UCI Vice Chancellor of Research John Hemminger has been honored with a Festschrift in a special issue of the Journal of Phyical Chemistry C published by American Chemical Society Publications.  The cover of the journal is made up of images from articles published by John (and several other AirUCI and UCI Chemistry colleagues).  This special issue is a splendid tribute to John's brilliant career in Chemistry, and we couldn't be prouder!

Monday, November 17, 2014

The Department of Chemistry at UCI is making two new faculty positions available which are likely to be associated with AirUCI as well as the Chemistry Department in general.  Following is the text of the advertisement for these positions:

FACULTY POSITIONS IN ATMOSPHERIC CHEMISTRY at the University of California, Irvine

The Department of Chemistry at the University of California, Irvine (Irvine, California) has two openings for outstanding scientists in atmospheric chemistry at the Full Professor level. These positions are part of an integrated, across-campus initiative in air quality and climate.  We seek to build this initiative through cross-cutting and transformative research programs that complement existing activities at UCI, with an emphasis on interdisciplinary activities and those that combine fundamental laboratory research with field observations, theory and modeling.  Areas of particular interest include particles and their roles in air quality and climate.  Candidates must have a PhD in Chemistry or a related field and a demonstrated record of accomplishments in atmospheric chemistry. The position requires both the establishment of a vigorous research program and a strong commitment to excellence in teaching at both the undergraduate and graduate levels.  Applications must be submitted electronically via the Internet at:  Applicants should upload a cover letter, a curriculum vita (including a publication list), and a concise statement of proposed research.  A separate statement that addresses past and/or potential contributions to diversity, equity and inclusion should also be included in the application materials.  Names and contact information for three references must be provided; letters should not be requested at this time.   Applications and supporting materials should be received by December 31, 2014 for full consideration.  The University of California is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer advancing inclusive excellence.  All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability, age, protected veteran status, or other protected categories covered by the UC nondiscrimination policy.

View employment ad

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

AirUCI Graduate Student researcher Kurtis Malecha will participate in Rancho San Joaquin Middle School's "Ask a Scientist Night" on October 15, 2014.  He will answer questions about science in general and our research in particular.

Friday, October 10, 2014

On October 10, 2014, high school students from the Lennox Academy will tour AirUCI's labs and learn about our research projects.  They will be led by their teacher, Wilkin Lee, who attended our 2014 Summer Teacher Workshop and was inspired to introduce his students to the work of AirUCI.

Friday, August 15, 2014

On August 15, 2014, AirUCI hosted a group of about 30 school teachers from UCI's Equitable Science Curriculum Integrating Arts in Public Education (ESCAPE) program in tours of our labs.  They heard overviews of our research projects, saw demonstrations of our equipment, and participated in interactive projects. 

ESCAPE is a partnership between UCI,the Orange County Department of Education, and the Segerstrom Center for the Arts to provide innovative training to grades 3-5 teachers for teaching the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS).

Monday, July 21, 2014

AirUCI researchers Dr. Carla Kidd, Dr. Mychel Varner, and Dr. Lisa Wingen volunteered to promote science education at the annual conference for the National Council of La Raza.  In a booth sponsored by the American Chemical Society, they gave some fun demonstrations for families with children of all ages and spoke about the importance of science education.

Carla Kidd and Mychel Varner helping kids discover the fun of science

Thursday, June 19, 2014

James N. Pitts, Jr., who has been our dear friend and invaluable resource since AirUCI's inception, has died at age 93.  He passed away peacefully at home this morning, surrounded by his family.  Our hearts are with his wife, AirUCI Director Barbara Finlayson-Pitts, and their family at this difficult time.  Jim's contributions to atmospheric science are legendary, and the air quality standards we enjoy today are largely due to his tireless work.  He is greatly missed.

AirUCI received word that the California State Senate closed their session on July 3rd in remembrance of Jim and his many contributions to the UC system, to his pioneering body of scientific discoveries, and to air quality advancements in California and beyond.  On June 26th, Rep. Ken Calvert of Riverside spoke before the U.S. Congress to honor Jim and his work.

Private services were held on June 27th at St. Columba’s Episcopal Mission near Fawnskin and Big Bear Lake.  Barbara wishes to convey her deepest appreciation for the many kind messages of comfort and support she has received and feels truly blessed to have so many dear people in her life.  Please feel free to visit the Jim Pitts memorial web page for a lovely remembrance of him, as well as the opportunity to leave your comments and contribute to the Jim Pitts Memorial Undergraduate Scholarship Fund.

Read the UCI article         Read the Riverside Press-Enterprise obituary        Read the Los Angeles Times obituary

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Prof. Donald Dabdub, AirUCI PI, has been given the Senior Innovation in Teaching Award presented by the Dean of Engineering at UCI.  We're so proud, Donald!