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



Tuesday, August 4, 2015

AirUCI PI Mike Dennin is often interviewed on TV for his expertise in Physics, Chemistry, and Earth Sciences. He's a regular on the Discovery Channel, the Science Channel, and other networks, and his course "Science from Superheroes to Global Warming" has become famous and is now offered on the online learning site, Coursera. Congratulations, Mike!

Saturday, August 1, 2015

AirUCI welcomes two new facullty to our institute — Dr. Alex Guenther and Dr. James N. Smith.  Dr. Guenther comes to us from PNNL in Richland, Washington and is the newest professor in UCI's Department of Earth System Sciences.  Dr. Smith is joining us from NCAR at Boulder, Colorado and is taking a new position in UCI's Department of Chemistry.  Welcome, Jim and Alex!

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

AirUCI PI Don Blake has received the prestigious Haagen-Smit Clean Air Award for 2015.   He will be giving a lecture at the Clean Air Leadership talks in Sacramento on June 24th, 2015 entitled "Cooking, Health, and Climate: The Surprisingly Large Impacts of Humanity's Oldest Daily Task."  Congratulations, Don!

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Two AirUCI faculty have been awarded NASA Earth Venture funds for their projects.  Professor Michael Prather is deputy principal investigator of the Atmospheric Tomography Mission, which will study how air pollution affects fast-acting greenhouse gases in the global atmosphere — assisting on this project will be AirUCI'sI Don Blake.  AirUCI P Eric Saltzman will be chief scientist on a ship studying marine ecosystems and aerosols. 
In all, NASA chose to fund five Earth Venture missions, each investigating a different influence on climate change, and UCI's Earth System Science department won nearly $4 million in these coveted NASA Earth Venture awards for three separate projects.  In addition to our AirUCI faculty, ESS Prof. Eric Rignot is deputy principal investigator of a melting glaciers mission.  Congratulations, all!
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Monday, June 1, 2015

AirUCI's Scott Samuelsen, Director of the National Fuel Cell Research Center, is quoted extensively in a business article on the CNBC web site.  Opportunities for investors to look at fuel cell technologies are discussed, and Scott explains why fuel cell production costs have decreased in recent years.
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Thursday, May 21, 2015

At the annual Chemistry Department Edward K.C. Lee dinner held on May 21, 2015, AirUCI was represented by Amanda MacMillan in the Nizkorodov group who won the Joan Rowland Award.  In addition David Row, James Neal, and Claudia Ramirez received the Michael E. Gebel Award given to graduate students who show great promise after taking time off before graduate school to work in the "real world."  The Gebel Award for undergraduate students was presented to Jacqueline Angsono and Nicole Carrejo.  Congratulations, all!

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Earth and Space Science News (EOS), published by the American Geophysical Union, has printed a tribute to our own Jim Pitts in the current online issue.  We anticipate that it will also be included in the June 15, 2015 print edition as well.  Jim's contributions to air quality issues and to atmospheric studies are legendary, and we're thrilled to have this recognition of his life and work nearly a year after his passing.
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Wednesday, April 22, 2015

AirUCI will host a group of AP Chemistry students from Troy High School in Fullerton on April 22, 2015.  Their teacher, Shannon Regli, attended the 2014 AirUCI Summer Teacher Workshop and wants her students to have the experience of touring our labs and hearing presentations on our research.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Postdoctoral Scholar position available in Computational/Theoretical Chemistry, Department of Chemistry, University of California, Irvine, Professor R. B. Gerber (  The position is for studies of the growth mechanisms and of the chemical and physical properties of nano-size particles in the atmosphere.  The work will combine aspects of quantum chemistry and dynamics, and will deal with multicomponent and multiphase particles.  The project will be carried out in close cooperation with experiments in the group of Professor Barbara Finlayson-Pitts at UCI.  A recent Ph.D. degree in Computational or Theoretical Chemistry or related field is required (degree date of 2011 or later).  Previous experience with quantum chemical methods and/or molecular dynamics and/or models of solids and liquids is desirable.  The position is available starting from June 15, 2015.  The initial appointment is for one year, with a possibility of renewal.  Salary is commensurate with experience.
Please send the following application materials directly to

  • a curriculum vitae including publications list
  • three letters of reference

In addition, you must apply online at: – no applications will be considered that do not both apply online and send the two items listed above to Prof. Gerber.
The University of California, Irvine is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer committed to excellence through diversity.  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.

Sunday, April 12, 2015

AirUCI's partner research group, UCI's National Fuel Cell Research Center led by Scott Samuelsen, is collaborating with Southern California Edison to develop a new process for using solar energy produced when power demand is low to split hydrogen from water and store the gas in pipelines.  The National Fuel Cell Research Center will test the hydrogen for vehicle use and determine how much of the gas can be injected into the pipeline system.
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