Dean B. Atkinson - Research Notes

Associate Professor of Chemistry
Ph.D., 1995, University of Arizona
National Research Council Postdoctoral Fellowship, National Institute of Standards and Technology, 1995-1997

Analytical/Physical Chemistry; Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics; Environmental Chemistry


I received my Ph.D. in Physical Chemistry from the University of Arizona in Tucson, AZ in 1995. My doctoral work, done under the direction of Dr. Mark A. Smith, centered on the investigation of radical-molecule reaction dynamics at low temperatures (1 -250 K). I was awarded an NRC postdoctoral fellowship at the National Institute of Standards and Technology in Gaithersburg, MD, where he worked with Dr. Jeffrey W. Hudgens from 1995-1997. In 1997, I accepted a faculty position in the chemistry department at Portland State University.

My research experience and training straddles the traditional areas of fluid mechanics, atmospheric, analytical and physical chemistry. Most of our current research focusses on aerosols, tiny particles dissolved in air. We have built and deployed instruments based on Cavity Ring-down that measure the optical property extinction (the sum of absorption and scattering) for atmospheric aerosols. Our most recent paper looked at how aerosol extinction and scattering changed with relative humidity during the 2010 CARES field campaign outside of Sacramento, CA.