Department of Chemistry Biochemistry


Regents' Professor
Ph.D., Columbia University, 1962

  Office: PSF-648  Lab: PSF-677
  Phone: (480) 965-3945  
  Fax: (480) 965-8960

 Dr. PETER BUSECK's Lab or Group Website

Research and Teaching Interests

The activities of my research group include (1) the development and application of electron-beam instruments to the study of nanoparticles in the environment and their effects on atmospheric geochemistry and air quality, (2) the origin and character of carbonaceous chondrite meteorites, and (3) the study of crystal defects in minerals at the atomic level using high-resolution transmission electron microscopy.

1. Environmental/Analytical Geochemistry: Aerosols exert important but only partly understood effects on environmental quality, global climate change, cloud formation, and health. We are using electron microscopy and spectroscopy to analyze aerosol particles from around the globe in order to determine their chemical and physical properties. This research is typically done as part of international experiments involving ground-, ship-, aircraft-based and remote-sensing satellite measurements in collaboration with scientists at government laboratories and other universities. We have recently sampled in South Africa, Namibia, the Middle East, Japan, Europe, and the tropics. (Support: NSF, DOE)

2. Cosmochemistry. Carbonaceous and certain enstatite chondrite meteorites are among the most primitive materials in the solar system and contain the keys to many long-standing problems in cosmochemistry. We are studying their mineralogy and geochemistry primarily with electron-beam techniques in order to understand the early history of the solar system. (Support: NASA)

3. Solid State Geochemistry/Mineralogy. High-resolution transmission electron microscopy (HRTEM) is extremely powerful for studying the chemistry and structure of crystalline materials. We can observe small irregularities and crystal defects in minerals and relate these to their geological histories. Chemical reactions, “frozen” while still in progress, can be observed and thus mechanisms of reaction understood. Emphasis is being placed on problems of order-disorder, non-stoichiometry, modulated structures, and other deviations from ideality in crystals. (Support: NSF, NASA)

Selected Publications

"Kumdykolite, a high-temperature feldspar from an enstatite chondrite," P. Németh, S.W. Lehner, M.I. Petaev, and P.R. Buseck, Am. Mineral. 98 1070-1073 (2013)

"Formation of niningerite by silicate sulfidation in EH3 enstatite chondrites," S.W. Lehner, M.I. Petaev, M.Yu. Zolotov, and P.R. Buseck, Geochim. Cosmochim. Acta 101 34-56 (2013)

"Carbon storage at defect sites in mantle mineral analogues," J. Wu and P.R. Buseck, Nature Geosci. in press (2013)

"Changes of ns-soot mixing states and shapes in an urban area during CalNex," K. Adachi and P.R. Buseck, J. Geophys. Res. 118 doi:10.1002/jgrd.50321 (2013)

"Are black carbon and soot the same?," P.R. Buseck, K. Adachi, A. Gelencsér, É. Tompa, and M. Pósfai, Atmos. Chem. Phys. Discuss. 12 24821-24846 (2012)

"Defect energy levels and electronic behavior of Ni-, Co-, and As-doped synthetic pyrite (FeS2)," S.W. Lehner, N. Newman, M. van Schilfgaarde, S. Bandyopadhyay, K. Savage, and P.R. Buseck, J. Appl. Phys. 111 083717, doi:10.1063/1.47065582012 (2012)

"Atmospheric tar balls from biomass burning in Mexico," K. Adachi and P.R. Buseck, J. Geophys. Res. 116 D05204, doi:10.1029/2010JD015102 (2011)

"Shapes of internally mixed hygroscopic aerosol particles after deliquescence, and their effect on light scattering," K. Adachi, E.J. Freney, and P.R. Buseck, Geophys. Res. Lett. 38 L13804, doi:10.1029/2011GL047540 (2011)

"Atmospheric-particle research: Past, present, and future," P.R. Buseck, Elements 6 208-209 (2010)

"Nature and climate effects of individual tropospheric aerosol particles," M. Pósfai and P.R. Buseck, Ann. Review Earth & Planet. Sci. 38 17-43 (2010)

"Hosted and free-floating metal-bearing atmospheric nanoparticles in Mexico City ," K. Adachi and P.R. Buseck, Environ. Sci. & Tech. 44 2299-2304 (2010)

"Shapes of soot aerosol particles and implications for their effects on climate," K. Adachi, S.H. Chung, and P.R. Buseck, J. Geophys. Res. 115 D15206, doi:10.1029/2009JD012868 (2010)

"Origin of kamacite, schreibersite and perryite in metal-sulfide nodules of the enstatite chondrite Sahara 97072 (EH3)," S.W. Lehner, P.R. Buseck, and W.F. McDonough, Meteoritics & Planet. Sci. 45 289-303 (2010)

"Internally mixed atmospheric aerosol particles: Hygroscopic growth and light scattering," E.J. Freney, K. Adachi, and P.R. Buseck, J. Geophys. Res. 115 D19210, doi:10.1029/2009JD013558 (2010)

"Tubular symplectic inclusions in olivine from the Fukang pallasite," M.R. Stevens, D. Bell, and P.R. Buseck, Meteoritics & Planet. Sci. 45 899-910 (2010)

"Haze types in Beijing and the influence of agricultural biomass burning," W.J. Li, L.Y. Shao, and P.R. Buseck, Atmos. Chem. Phys. 10 8119-8130 (2010)