Thomas C Preston

Associate ProfessorThomas Preston
Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences; Department of Chemistry

B.Sc. (University of Toronto, 2005)
M.Sc. (University of Western Ontario, 2007)
Ph.D. (University of British Columbia, 2011)
NSERC Postdoctoral Fellow (University of Bristol, 2012-2014)

Contact Information

Office: OM 425 & Burnside Hall BH816
Phone: (514) 398-3766
Email: thomas.preston [at]
Lab: OM 414/ OM430
Lab Phone: 514-398-6916
Webpage: Preston Group Website

Research themes

  • Analytical/Environmental
  • Chemical Physics

Research Description

Our research group is focused on developing methods for the study of microphysical and chemical processes in atmospheric aerosol particles. Some topics of interest include: hygroscopicity and water transport, efflorescence and deliquescence, oxidative aging, and liquid-liquid phase separation.

The primary experimental method used by our group is optical trapping. This allows aerosols to be studied at the single particle level where physical parameters can then be determined with high precision and accuracy. Elastic and inelastic light scattering measurements from single particles are taken over time and are used to determine size and composition. We are also interested in the modelling of the interaction of electromagnetic radiation with particles as this is necessary for the interpretation of measurements and important for the development of future instrumentation.

In summary, our lab uses single particle spectroscopy and modelling to understand fundamental thermodynamic and kinetic processes in atmospheric aerosols.

Currently Teaching

CHEM 219 Intro to Atmospheric Chemistry 3 Credits
    Offered in the:
  • Fall
  • Winter
  • Summer

CHEM 377 Instrumental Analysis 2 3 Credits
    Offered in the:
  • Fall
  • Winter
  • Summer


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