Welcome to the Pratt Lab blog! Dr. Kerri Pratt is an assistant professor in the Departments of Chemistry and Earth & Environmental Sciences and faculty associate of the Program in the Environment at the University of Michigan. We study atmospheric trace gases, particles, snow, and clouds and their interactions with the biosphere (forests) and cryosphere (snow and sea ice). Our interdisciplinary research has relevance to climate change, air quality, and human health. As an analytical chemistry lab, we primarily use novel mass spectrometry techniques during our field research. We invite you to follow our adventures in (and outside!) the lab!

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Congratulations to Matt!

Congratulations to graduate student Matt Gunsch for being awarded a conference travel award at the University of Michigan Department of Chemistry Vaughan Symposium!

New Summer Group Photo!

Front row (left to right):
Jackelyn Rodriguez (summer student joint with Ault Group, Cass Tech High School, Detroit, MI)
Zhuoyu Peng (rising senior, Chemistry & Program in the Environment)
Rachel Kirpes (summer graduate rotation student, Chemistry)
Jillian Cellini (graduated senior, Earth Systems Science)

Second row (left to right):
Wuliang Zhang (rising senior, Chemistry)
Michael Weber (summer Chemistry REU student, Muhlenberg College)
Garrett Welshofer (summer graduate rotation student, Chemistry)
Eric Boone (rising 2nd year graduate student, Chemistry)
Prof. Kerri Pratt
Matt Gunsch (rising 3rd year graduate student, Chemistry)

Back:
Desmond Madu (summer student joint with Ault Group, Cass Tech High School, Detroit, MI)

Missing:
Nate May (rising 2nd year graduate student, Chemistry) - at the UM Biological Station!
Jennifer Berry (rising senior, Chemistry) - on the Juneau Icefield in Alaska!
Katherine De Los Santos (summer Physics REU student, Queens College) - at the Physics Electronics Shop!
Stephanie Schmidt (summer UMBS REU student joint with Ault Group, Michigan State Univ.) - at the UM Biological Station!



Thursday, July 24, 2014

Halfway through UMBS Field Study

~ Two weeks down, two more to go! At the halfway point of our field study at the University of Michigan Biological Station (UMBS), everything is moving along very nicely. For the first two weeks, I (Matt Gunsch), with the help of our UMBS REU student Stephanie, was stationed at the PROPHET lab at UMBS running the instrumentation installed by the Pratt and Ault labs. I have been working primarily with the ATOFMS and have been ensuring its successful operation and collection of data. Initial data analysis has begun, and some very early results will be presented next week at the University of Michigan's Vaughan Symposium!
The PROPHET Lab and Tower. My home for the past two weeks.
Another Pratt lab graduate student, Nate May, recently arrived at UMBS to relieve me of my ATOFMS duties. He is now in charge of its operation until we travel back up in early August for the conclusion of the field study. It has been a fun and productive two weeks for me, and I'm sure it will continue for him!
Nate May (left) and Matt Gunsch (right) watching over the ATOFMS.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

UMBS PROPHET Tower Instrumentation Set Up

Last week Pratt Group graduate students Nate May and Matthew Gunsch, recent graduate Jillian Cellini, and Professor Kerri Pratt traveled to the University of Michigan Biological Station in Pellston, MI for our summer aerosol field study. Professor Andrew Ault and Ault group graduate students Daniel Gardner and Becky Craig also came up for the instrument set-up portion of the field campaign occurring this summer at the PROPHET tower site. UMBS Summer REU student Stephanie Schmidt from Michigan State University was also present to assist our team in setting up our instrumentation.

From left to right: Graduate Students Nate May, Dan Gardner, Matthew Gunsch, Garrett Welshofer, Eric Boone, and Professor Ault helping to load the ATOFMS before departing from Ann Arbor.
Among the instruments present during this field campaign that was set up last week was an ATOFMS (Aerosol Time-of-Flight Spectrometer), on loan from Prof. Phil Hopke at Clarkson University (Thank you!!). The ATOFMS will sample from the top of the PROPHET tower, above the forest canopy, from the sampling line that was installed during the group's last visit to the PROPHET site.  We also set up a MOUDI (micro-orifice uniform deposit impactor) to collect atmospheric particles for later off-line analysis.  These instruments now accompany the aerosol sizing instrumentation that was set-up in June.  Atmospheric measurements are also being made by Prof. Eric Kort's group from the University of Michigan and Prof. Tim VanReken's group from Washington State University, so it should be a productive study!

The first day of the set-up process on the ground at the PROPHET lab.
With the set up of the instruments complete thanks to the help of everyone present, the field study at the PROPHET tower has gotten off to a fantastic start!


Recent Pratt lab graduate Jillian Cellini and Ault lab graduate students Becky Craig and Dan Gardner prepped to scale the PROPHET tower.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Welcome Rachel!

Welcome Rachel Kirpes!  Rachel recently graduated from Iowa State University and received a Davis Graduate Fellowship for her summer rotation as a graduate student in the Pratt lab!  We are excited to have you in the lab this summer!