Kolby Jardine studies plant and microbial metabolism by working at the interface of biochemistry, ecology, and atmospheric sciences (Biochemical Ecology).
The primary goal of the research is to characterize quantitative relationships between biochemical, optical, and volatile organic signals emitted by plants during climate extremes in order to characterize processes and mechanisms of potentially high global importance. This presents exciting opportunities for the development of new methods for the continuous local and global monitoring of the physiological, energetic, and oxidative status of plants and ecosystems and their associated cycling of carbon and water.
Field, greenhouse, and laboratory methods are developed for the quantification of carbon dioxide and gas-phase volatile organic compound concentrations, fluxes, and isotopic composition from leaves to ecosystems and seconds to seasons. Methods include IR spectrometry, proton transfer reaction mass spectrometry (PTR-MS), and thermal desorption-gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (TD-GC-MS).