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Chris Reddy


Chris Reddy is a senior scientist at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution and studies marine pollution, petroleum geochemistry, and natural products.

Reddy became interested in biofuels about ten years ago when his dad asked him what biodiesel was and whether there were any catastrophic spills of it. That question led to a marriage of Reddy’s interests in fossil fuel spills and natural products, and he investigated what would happen if there was biodiesel spill, the quality of commercially available biodiesel, and potential environmental impacts of chronic pollution from biodiesel-driven vehicles.

Reddy then turned to making algae-based biofuels and began to collaborate with a former guest student in his lab from 2002, Greg O’Neil, now a chemistry professor at Western Washington University.

Reddy’s attention to biofuels was diverted when the Deepwater Horizon disaster occurred in the Gulf of Mexico in April 2010, but his work with O’Neil continued. With O’Neil on sabbatical  leave in Reddy’s laboratory this year, the two have accelerated their efforts and been having a lot of fun doing it.

Reddy received his B.S. degree in chemistry from Rhode Island College and his Ph.D. in chemical oceanography at the University of Rhode Island. He received an executive education certificate in management and leadership from MIT and completed Leadership for the 21st Century at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government.

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What Happened to Deepwater Horizon Oil?

Officials pumped a huge amount of chemicals into the deep ocean during the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill in an effort to disperse the oil. A study published this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences offers evidence that the dispersant may helped microbes break down the oil.

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A Faster Way to Better Reactions

A Faster Way to Better Reactions

Finding new chemical reactions to synthesize commercial products more efficiently is big business and a major source of innovation. A new study offers a way to make the search faster, cheaper, and greener.

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Jet Fuel from Algae?

Jet Fuel from Algae?

New research shows a way to tap overlooked fats in marine algae to produce compounds used in jet fuel.

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