Dr. Dalila Mathews is an associate professor of chemistry in the Biology, Chemistry and Mathematics Department.
She is a graduate of the University of Montevallo, where she received a B.S. in chemistry. She obtained her Ph.D. at the University of Georgia, where she worked in an experimental physical chemistry laboratory. Her research focused on determining the rates of gas phase reaction of importance to the interstellar medium and the atmosphere of Titan. After completing her Ph.D., Dr. Mathews decided that her research interests were more down to earth–Earth’s atmosphere, that is. She completed a one-year post-doctoral research assistantship where she learned the techniques needed to study the reactions happening in Earth’s atmosphere.
She is specifically interested in the reactions relating to the formation of aerosol particles because the effect of aerosols is one of the biggest uncertainties in modeling the radiation balance of Earth’s climate.
Dr. Mathews is also interested in solar power and has begun research into dye sensitized solar cells (DSSC). DSSCs are cheaper to make and more rugged that silicon-based solar cells. The biggest issue facing DSSCs is finding appropriate dyes that absorb a broad range of electromagnetic spectrum. Dr. Mathews is measuring the efficiency of the solar cell using a variety of suitable dyes.