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Kevin O. Douglass

Kevin Douglass is a research chemist in the Sources and Detectors Group of the Physical Measurement Laboratory at National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). In 2007 he received the National Research Council Postdoctoral Fellowship award and came to NIST to develop new spectroscopic tools to study the detailed structure of bio-related and biomimetic molecules. The results of this work are used to validate both quantum mechanical and classical methods used to model molecular structure. Prior to his time at NIST, as a graduate student in the chemistry department at the University of Virginia, he worked to develop multiple resonance microwave and pulsed infrared laser techniques to investigate intramolecular vibrational energy redistribution (IVR) of molecules and the resulting dynamics. Understanding the role IVR is critical for understanding even the simplest chemical reactions.  During this time he worked to develop the technique of ultra-broadband chirped-pulse Fourier Transform Microwave spectroscopy as tool to probe molecular structure and the changes in molecular structure that result from vibrational energy flow. 


Current Research Projects:

There is a growing need for highly accurate and precise measurements of greenhouse gases to provide a full accounting of inventories for both natural and anthropogenic sources and sinks. These measurements support NIST-wide goals in climate change and greenhouse gas mitigation and is a collaborative effort involving the Physical Measurement, Information Technology, Materials Measurement, and Engineering Laboratories at NIST. To achieve our measurement goals, we are developing methods to perform remote sensing using differential absorption LIght Detection And Ranging (LIDAR). A DIfferential Absorption LIDAR (DIAL) system is being developed in the eye safe 1.6 micron atmospheric window region where three critical greenhouse gases, carbon dioxide (CO2), nitrous oxide (N2O), and methane (CH4) have weak vibrational absorption bands. The DIAL system will be used to measure both species concentration and wind speed to calculate and model flux.

Schematic of proposed measurement system


For more information, see the DIAL webpage.


2007-2009 National Research Council Postdoctoral Research Associateship


Previous Publications:

“Measuring Picosecond Isomerization Kinetics Using Broadband Microwave Spectroscopy,” BC Dian, GG Brown, KO Douglass, and BH Pate, Science, 320, 924-928(2008).

“Conformational Isomerization Kinetics of Pent-1-en-4-yne with 3330 cm-1 of Internal Energy Measured by Dynamic Rotational Spectroscopy,” BC Dian, GG Brown, KO Douglass, FS Rees, JE Johns, P Nair, RD Suenram, and BH Pate, Proc Natl Acad Sci, 105, 12696-12700 (2008).

Kevin Douglass


Research Chemist
Quantum Electronics and Photonics Division
Sources and Detectors Group

Employment History:

2007-present, NIST, Gaithersburg, MD


Ph.D. Physical Chemistry, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA

B.S. Chemistry, Marist College, Poughkeepsie, NY


Phone: 301-975-6489