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Meet the Fellows

Research Experiences: Jovan Tadic

From Fireworks to Atmospheric Science

Dr. Eliza Montgomery

Tadic and his research team just finished a campaign to investigate gas emissions from a dry lake bed in Railroad Valley, Nevada. Their work provides data for the calibration of the Greenhouse Gases Observing Satellite (GOSAT), a Japanese project that remotely measures greenhouse gases.

The research employs the measurement capability of Alpha Jet, an aircraft that carries the team's measurement equipment.

During primary school, Jovan Tadic's fascination with pyrotechnics compelled him to create homemade firecrackers and rockets. Now he's putting that scientific curiosity to use at Ames Research Center.

Tadic and his colleagues developed mobile airborne platforms capable of creating 4-D maps of greenhouse gases over certain areas of interest—an integral step toward studying the effects of greenhouse gases on the atmosphere.

"I have been interested in natural sciences since early childhood," Tadic says. "During secondary school, I realized that chemistry is really the science of choice for me because it is both fundamental and applied science."

Tadic and his research team just finished a campaign to investigate gas emissions from a dry lake bed in Railroad Valley, Nevada. Their work provides data for the calibration of the Greenhouse Gases Observing Satellite (GOSAT), a Japanese project that remotely measures greenhouse gases.

The research employs the measurement capability of Alpha Jet, an aircraft that carries the team's measurement equipment.

"This was an opportunity to demonstrate Alpha Jet's value as a scientific tool," Tadic says. "NASA is going to launch the Orbiting Carbon Observatory (OCO-2) satellite soon, and this newly developed platform is expected to be a base for the collaboration."

NPP gave Tadic the opportunity to learn from his advisor, Dr. Max Loewenstein, who earlier developed an analytical instrument for measuring carbon monoxide, nitrous oxide, and methane. "He invested tremendous effort and time to develop this instrument from scratch, and also to optimize its usage and understand its limitations," Tadic says. "His experience and knowledge were very useful and allowed us to quickly overcome all difficulties and optimize our current platform."

Tadic has already published several papers as a result of his research. He intends to continue his study of environmental and atmospheric chemistry, with the thought of teaching at a university.

"As greenhouse gasses continue to attract attention, and since most efforts to decrease emissions have proved unsatisfactory, there will be more attempts to understand their dynamics," Tadic says.