Erin S. Whitney

Staff Scientist

Photo of Erin S. Whitney
(303) 384-6619
At NREL Since: 

Erin Whitney's research focuses on the synthesis and characterization of novel nanostructured materials for vehicular hydrogen storage. She arrived at NREL after finishing her Ph.D in Physical Chemistry. As a graduate student at the University of Colorado at Boulder, she worked under the tutelage of Dr. David Nesbitt, using high-resolution infrared spectroscopy to study the structures of slit jet-cooled gas-phase halogenated methyl radicals, as well as quantum state-resolved reaction dynamics in atom + polyatom systems.

Her path to NREL began with research in atmospheric chemistry. As an undergraduate at Williams College, she completed an honors thesis under the direction of Dr. Birgit Koehler, using FTIR methods to probe the adsorption of atmospheric species onto soot surfaces. Then, after a year at Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico and two formative summers as part of the Juneau Icefield Research Program in her home state of Alaska, she started graduate school with the intention of conducting aircraft-based atmospheric field studies. Instead, after both field- and lab-based research, and completion of the Environmental Policy Certificate program at the University of Colorado, she decided to be part of the solution to global fossil fuel dependency and its consequences. Grounded in fundamental physical chemistry methods, she is enjoying the many opportunities at NREL to apply her knowledge to practical applications in this direction.

Selected Publications 

  1. Whitney, E.S.; Dong, F.; Nesbitt, D.J. "Jet-cooled infrared spectroscopy in slit supersonic discharges: Symmetric and antisymmetric CH2 stretching modes of fluoromethyl (CH2F) radical." J. Chem. Phys. (submitted)
  2. Whitney, E.S.; Haeber, T.; Schuder, M.D.; Blair, A.C.; Nesbitt, D.J. "High-resolution infrared laser studies in slit jet discharges: Symmetric CH2 stretch excitation of jet-cooled CH2Cl radical." J. Chem. Phys. (submitted)
  3. Whitney, E.S.; Zolot, A.M.; McCoy, A.B.; Nesbitt, D.J. (2005). "Quantum state-resolved reactive scattering of F + C2H6 à HF( v,J) + C2H5." J. Chem. Phys. (122);
  4. Koehler, B.G.; Nicholson, V.T.; Roe, H.G.; Whitney, E.S. (1999). "A Fourier transform infrared study of the adsorption of SO2 on n-hexane soot from -140 degrees C to -30 degrees C." J. Geophys. Res. - Atmospheres (104); pp. 5507-5514.
  5. Parkin, S.; Marsch, G.A.; Hope, H.; Whitney, E.; Winter, N.W.; Colvin, M.; Felton, J.S.; Turteltaub, K.W (1996). "Comparison of Crystal Structure and Theory for 2-Amino-1-Methyl-6-Phenylimidazo[4,5-b]pyridine (PhIP)." Chem. Res. Toxicol. (9(3); pp. 574-579.