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Department Seminar Series - Kristina M. Wagstrom, Ph.D.

University of Connecticut



Date & Time

November 7, 2022, 12:00 pm12:50 pm


This is part of the 2022 CBEE Department Seminar Series.

Applying Engineering Approaches to Address Human and Ecosystem Health Impacts of Air Pollution


I will discuss three ongoing projects in my lab aimed at facilitating a decrease in the negative impacts of air pollution. The first is a collaborative initiative between UConn and UConn Health aimed at deploying low-cost, DIY air filtration solutions in community settings throughout Connecticut. I will discuss our work deploying and testing these solutions in a variety of settings. These DIY solutions have the potential to decrease aerosol concentrations, like the ones that spread respiratory diseases like COVID-19 and RSV, in active classrooms by 50-90%. For the second project, we are bringing together different modeling approaches and low-cost monitoring approaches to develop better estimates of how air pollution varies in space and time. Through this work we have found that we might be substantially underestimate exposures in urban areas which can have important implications for environmental justice and equity. In the final project, I will discuss our project to provide estimates of the contributions of different sources to the deposition of atmospheric nitrogen to terrestrial and aquatic systems. This additional nitrogen can lead to imbalances of nutrients in these systems.


Dr. Kristina Wagstrom is an Associate Professor in the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at the University of Connecticut. Her lab, the Computational Atmospheric Chemistry and Exposure (CACE) Laboratory, specializes in applying computational engineering-based approaches to address the impacts of air pollution on human and ecosystem health. We use a combination of chemical transport modeling, near source modeling, other novel modeling approaches, low cost monitoring, and community partnerships to effectively address a variety of questions. The overarching goal of her laboratory is to bridge the gap between the basic scientific understanding of the transport and transformation of atmospheric pollutants and the tools policy makers and communities use to develop potential air pollution abatement strategies. As much of this research naturally lends itself to community engagement and empowerment, she strives to develop research directions that address community concerns and engage students with the community. 

Kristina obtained her PhD in Chemical Engineering from Carnegie Mellon University. Kristina has served as a American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Science and Technology Policy Fellow in Washington D.C. where she was hosted by the National Center for Environmental Research within the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Office of Research and Development. Kristina serves on the leadership committee for the AIChE Environmental Division. She is also the recipient of an NSF CAREER award. In her spare time she enjoys playing the flute, STEM outreach, scuba diving, and travel.


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