Scientist in the Mist
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Dr. Chang researches how types of particles in the atmosphere change fog properties. Her aerosol studies enrich our understanding of the forces that affect climate systems in the Arctic.
Rachel Chang earned a BASc in Engineering Science and a PhD in Chemistry from the University of Toronto. Determined to continue her research, she completed a postdoctoral fellowship at Harvard University.
Since July 2014, Chang has served as an assistant professor at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia, where she teaches undergraduate and graduate level courses.
As the Canada Research Chair in Atmospheric Science, Chang strives to further our understanding of how various atmospheric particles influence the formation of fog droplets. Such a study could improve forecasting in Canada’s coastal regions and help prevent some of the 2,000 annual vehicular collisions caused by reduced visibility. Furthermore, Chang hopes that her research acts as a tool for new studies examining how pollution affects the Arctic’s air quality, and for predicting future climate change.
Other interests include oceanic contributions to atmospheric aerosol. Chang is the co-author of approximately 40 publications, and has given many presentations and seminars across Canada and the United States.
In 2015, when a Nobel Prize-winning scientist argued that gender-mixed laboratories were disruptive, Chang and other scientists took to social media to discuss their experiences as women working in STEM fields. These tweets highlight the difficulties of battling systemic discrimination.
Rachel Chang’s research on atmospheric science was partially funded by NSERC.