This week, Nieves Maria Flores March successfully defended her Master’s thesis named the “Organic Constituents of Atmospheric Aerosols in a Hemi-boreal Forest” and was awarded the highest grade – “A”!

In this project (supervised by Prof. Heikki Junninen), Nieves studied the chemical composition of organic aerosols collected from an Estonian Hemi-boreal forest during winter, spring, and summer. This research is important because atmospheric aerosols play a significant role in climate change and human health. However, the impact of boreal forests is difficult to characterize because of the chemical diversity of aerosol samples. 

To get a better understanding of the chemical composition, Nieves applied two analytical methods – gas chromatography – mass spectrometry (GC-MS) and nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) to the forests samples. For data analysis, she used a molecular networking technique to tentatively identify the possible compounds. She concluded, that the developed set of methods has great potential to perform fast screening of the chemical composition of atmospheric aerosols. 

The GC-MS and NMR analyses were performed in collaboration with our Chair of Analytical Chemistry and we are happy to say that this joint and fruitful project will also continue in the future. 

Congratulations to you, Nieves!


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