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Dr. Ryan Moffet Awarded DOE Grant

Dr. Ryan Moffet, Assistant Professor of Chemistry, recently received confirmation of a three-year Department of Energy grant award in the amount of $334,000. The award will enable Dr. Moffet to continue his research into the effects of aerosols on the environment. The grant will pay for graduate students and personnel, microscopy experiments at Lawrence Berkeley National Lab and data analysis at Pacific. Dr. Moffet is working with graduate students Matthew Fraund and Don Pham, and intern and alumnus Matthew Bonanno.

Specifically, this project will analyze and compare aerosol particles collected in undeveloped areas of the Amazon region and near the city of Manaus, Brazil, to determine their origin and their effects on the environment. Aerosol particles can have direct effects on the environment by scattering light, which cools the atmosphere, and absorbing light, which heats the air; the indirect effect of aerosols is on cloud droplet formation, and therefore production of rain. Because of this, research into the effects of aerosols helps predict future climate change. The Amazon region is used for its pristine environment, and Dr. Moffet has previously worked with samples from there. The city of Manaus is the most populous in the region, and was selected to determine its impact on the region's environment.  

As with other scientific research activities, Dr. Moffet explained that his research crosses disciplines, including geophysics, earth sciences, and some biology - all of which links with his specialty in chemistry. Dr. Moffet has been involved with the Department of Energy's atmospherics research programs since he graduated, and just completed work on his previous DOE grant, awarded in 2012 in the amount of $260,000, which enabled him to do similar aerosol research around the Sacramento, California area. Dr. Moffet learned of this latest grant opportunity from his continued work with the DOE.  

To learn of other grant opportunities, click here to view a list of current funding opportunities from the Office of Sponsored Programs, or contact Barbara Sasso, Senior Grant Writer, at bsasso@pacific.edu.