Karl Kammermeyer Lecture Series

Thursday, February 4 at 3:30 pm to 4:20 pm
Pappajohn Business Building, W151
21 East Market Street, Iowa City, Iowa

Spyros N. Pandis Research Professor, Department of Chemical Engineering, Carnegie Mellon University Professor, Department of Chemical Engineering, University of Patras, Greece Reception immediately following in W101 PBB -- Atmospheric Evolution and Chemical Aging of Organic Particulate Matter The human development of our planet has a variety of negative impacts on the composition of its atmosphere at every scale – locally, regionally, and even globally. One of these dramatic changes has been the increase in the mass concentrations of sub-micrometer particles by one to sometimes two orders of magnitude over populated areas in the Northern Hemisphere. These atmospheric aerosols can cause serious health problems, reduce visibility, contribute to acidic deposition and material damage, but are also cooling the planet by reflecting sunlight back to space. Organic particulate material has been traditional classified as either primary or secondary with the primary component being treated as non-volatile and inert. Laboratory and field studies during the last decade, demonstrate that primary combustion aerosol is highly dynamic, consisting of mostly semi-volatile material that moves between the gas and particulate phases in the atmosphere and at the same time is oxidized forming a variety of oxygenated products. This oxidation can lead to both lower volatility material through functionalization but also to smaller lower volatility molecules through fragmentation. A unifying framework for the description of all organic components based on their volatility distribution and oxygen content (the two-dimensional volatility basis set) can be used for the treatment of a wide range of processes affecting organic aerosol loadings and composition in the atmosphere. This modeling framework is combined with emission characterization studies, laboratory smog chamber studies, and field measurements to simulate the atmospheric evolution of these organic emissions. Applications of this modeling framework to recent studies in Europe where major field campaigns have recently taken place are used to provide insights about our understanding (or lack thereof) of the corresponding physical and chemical processes. Biography Spyros Pandis is Professor in the Chemical Engineering Department of the University of Patras in Greece. He is also Research Professor of Chemical Engineering and Engineering and Public Policy in Carnegie Mellon University in the US. Spyros received his PhD from the California Institute of Technology in 1991 and joined the faculty of Carnegie Mellon University in 1993 and of the University of Patras in 2004. His research includes theoretical and experimental studies of atmospheric chemistry, urban and regional pollution, and topics related to global climate change. His research team currently investigates the formation and properties of organic aerosol, aerosol-water interactions, formation and growth of ultrafine particles and develops regional chemical transport models focusing on air quality. He has published approximately 200 papers in international peer-reviewed journals. He has authored together with John Seinfeld the book “Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics: From Air Pollution to Global Change”. Professor Pandis has been awarded among others the European Research Council IDEAS award, the Ken Whitby award by the American Association for Aerosol Research, the US National Science Foundation Career award, the Caltech Vaughn Lectureship, and the Carnegie Mellon Elias Chair. He is the ex-president of the American Association for Aerosol Research and one of the editors of Aerosol Science & Technology.

Contact Info: Katie Schnedler, chemical-engineering@uiowa.edu, 335-1215