Rebecca Rapf, Ph.D.
- Assistant Professor , Chemistry
Prof. Rapf is a physical chemist interested in using fundamental laboratory studies to inform and contribute to a wide range of applied fields, including atmospheric chemistry, planetary science, biophysics, and astrobiology. She was raised in Sheridan, WY, at the base of the beautiful Bighorn Mountains. After her undergraduate studies at Dartmouth College, she completed her PhD in 2017 at the University of Colorado Boulder under the supervision of Prof. Veronica Vaida. Her thesis work focused primarily on detailed mechanistic studies of the photochemistry of organic species in the aqueous phase under conditions relevant to both the modern and early Earth as well as characterizing the surface activity and aggregation behavior of simple lipids and their photochemical products. As a post-doctoral scholar with Dr. Kevin Wilson at Lawrence Berkeley National Lab, she studied reactivity in small droplets and aerosol, as well as continuing to explore self-assembly of nanoparticles. In 2020, she joined the faculty of Trinity teaching the fundamentals of physical chemistry and researching fundamental physical and chemical processes that are relevant to natural environments.