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Atmospheric Chemist Honored


Atmospheric Chemist Recognized by American Geophysical Union

Roger Atkinson Elected Fellow of AGU, Recognizes Research Leadership

(January 26, 2005)

The Los Angeles skyline on a smoggy day

The Los Angeles skyline on a smoggy day

RIVERSIDE, Calif. — www.ucr.eduRoger Atkinson, a distinguished professor of atmospheric chemistry at the University of California, Riverside has been elected a fellow of the American Geophysical Union, an honor recognizing his eminence and leadership in atmospheric research.

The American Geophysical Union is an international scientific society of over 43,000 members from 130 countries that fosters high quality scientific research in the understanding of Earth and atmospheric, oceanic, hydrologic, space and planetary sciences. Atkinson is one of 43 scientists to receive fellowships this year.

AGU members elect fellows each year from among scientists who have attained acknowledged eminence in one or more branches of geophysics, according to a letter announcing Atkinson’s election. He is scheduled to receive his fellowship certificate at the AGU joint assembly in New Orleans, May 23-27.

Atkinson is the director of UC Riverside’s Air Pollution Research Center, established in 1961 to conduct basic and applied research into the formation of photochemical pollution.

His pioneering research on the atmospheric reactions of organic chemicals and their role in the formation of photochemical smog has received recognition from various quarters over the years. Among them are the California Air Resources Board, the Institute for Scientific Information and the American Chemical Society.

Atkinson has helped evolve better analytical and experimental methods for researchers. He has combined the use of large reaction chambers with an array of analytical techniques, such as the use of gas chromatographs, infrared spectroscopy and atmospheric pressure ionization tandem mass spectrometry. His research has led to techniques for predicting the atmospheric lifetimes of organic compounds. Atkinson has also compiled data from his and other research groups into publications that are widely used by others in the atmospheric chemistry community. This data has been used to develop computer models of air pollution formation that are used by industry and government regulatory agencies in the United States and Europe.

A native of Scarborough, U.K., Atkinson received his Ph.D. in physical chemistry from the University of Cambridge in 1969, after which he spent time as a postdoctoral fellow in Canada before joining UCR in 1972.

Atkinson has authored more than 350 papers, book chapters and reports. He has served a numerous state, national and international air pollution committees and advisory panels.
Roger Atkinson

Roger Atkinson

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