Brown Carbon and Aerosols

The title of my project can be a bit misleading. While I am working with one brown carbon compound (4-Nitrophenol) in isolation, brown carbon almost never lives as a single molecule in the atmosphere. It is far more likely to exist in a cluster of other atmospheric molecules called an aerosol. These bundles of chemicals…
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Brown Carbon and Color

Yesterday I was tasked with doing a pH study of the absorption of another brown carbon compound called 4-Nitrocatechol. As I took it from low pH to high pH, I noticed it had some stronger color properties than other compounds we have worked with. Check it out in the video below:


A Bit of Q&A

In this post I want to take the time to answer some questions I got from readers on my first post (linked here: http://honorsfellows.blogs.wm.edu/2019/06/25/project-overview-meeting-team/). I loved the feedback because it’s hard to cover everything at once and these questions helped show me what I need to include when talking about my project in the future.…
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Project Overview and Meeting the Team

Hello all! Over the next few days I will be posting about my first few weeks of research here in the lab. It’s currently week 4 out of 10, which I think is a good stopping place to reflect on what we have been doing in the O’Brien group and where we are heading next.…
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Photolysis of Atmospheric Brown Carbon Abstract

Earth’s atmosphere is home to a wide variety of organic compounds and chemical processes that affect our air quality, environment, and health. One class of these compounds is a type of light-absorbing molecule known as brown carbon. Brown carbon’s primary sources are numerous and include biomass burning and fossil fuel pollution. Once in the atmosphere,…
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