ROBERT N. ULRICH

Rob Ulrich on a pontoon boat in Kettle Run, Virginia in March 2016.

Rob Ulrich on a pontoon boat in Kettle Run, Virginia in March 2016.

My research interests revolve around understanding aspects of crystal nucleation and growth, particularly through the lens of thermodynamics and kinetics. Currently, I am studying amorphous calcium carbonate (ACC), which can play a role in calcification and biomineralization in calcitic and aragonitic organisms. Biomineralization is the process through which these organisms produce minerals within their tissues to form functional structures. Biomineral research has diverse applications in science and engineering including new material synthesis, paleoclimate research, cementations, and biomedical calcification.

I recently received dual degrees in Chemistry and Geosciences from Virginia Tech and am currently a first-year Ph.D. student at the University of California, Los Angeles. For the summer, I am interning at S.S. Papadopulos & Associates, an environmental consulting firm internationally recognized for their practices in geochemistry, environmental engineering, contaminant studies, remediation, and surface-water hydrology.

Additionally, I am an advocate for increased efforts in science communication and think that the scientific community would be greatly improved through increased diversity.