01 March 2013

New inventive professor in atmospheric chemistry


A popular instructor doing exciting and useful chemistry; Matthew Stanley Johnson has just been appointed professor of atmospheric chemistry in the Department of Chemistry

Department Head Mikael Bols is pleased to be promoting this industrious and clever member of staff.

“Johnson has made enormous contributions in innovation, instruction and research at the Department. It is a great pleasure to continue working with him,” says Bols.

Atmospheric self cleaning in the lab

Johnson, an American, is educated in Minnesota and California, but has been employed by the Department of Chemistry at UCPH since 1998. He has worked tirelessly to understand the chemical processes underlying the atmosphere’s ability to cleanse itself of pollutants. But a distinctively basic research project demonstrated tremendous potential nearer to earth. The principles in operation in the upper levels of the atmosphere turned out to be so simple that they could be packed in a box and sold to industry as pollution abatement technology.

Innovation balanced with education

Johnson’s invention which has been commercially available since mid 2012 promises to be an industrial adventure of the highest order. Though Johnson has been busy with his invention, education is still very much on his mind. Indeed, together with colleague Sven Harnung, he released a major environmental chemistry work in 2012 – a whopper of a tome,

448 pages that discuss everything there is to know about the chemical processes that take place from the earth’s core to its outer atmosphere, and from the birth of the universe to the present day.

Department Head Mikael Bols looks forward to more research and teaching from Johnson, but also hopes that Johnson’s approach to innovation will inspire other the rest of the Department’s researchers.

“We must all innovate more and I think that we can all learn from his experiences,” says Bols. Matthew Johnson’s official promotion to professorship was on February 1, 2013.