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Faculty

Bob Johnson

Robert E. Johnson

John Llyod Newcomb Professor Engineering Physics and Materials Science

Honorary Doctorate Uppsala University, Sweden, 1999
Ph.D.
University of Wisconsin, Physics, 1968
M.S. Wesleyan University, Physics, 1963
B.S. Colorado College, Mathmatics, 1961

Department of Materials Science & Engineering
University of Virginia
PO Box 400745
116 Engineer's Way
Charlottesville, VA 22904-4745
p: 434-924-3244
f: 434-924-1353
e-mail

Website: Johnson Research Group

Research Interests


I study ion, electron, and photon interactions with surfaces of low-temperature condensed-gas solids and biomolecular solids and with atmospheric gases. The principal processes studied are the ejection of molecules from the surface, called desorption or sputtering, and atomic collision cross sections. The applications are to surfaces and atmospheres of objects in the outer solar system or the interstellar medium, in order to understand the ambient gas or plasma observed, and samples of biomolecules, in order to produce a source of gas-phase biomolecules for studies in molecular biology.

Professonal Experience and Memberships

American Institute of Physics, American Geophysical Union, American Astronomical Society

John Lloyd Newcomb Chair in Engineering Physics and Materials Science 1991- present

Professor of Engineering Physics, University of Virginia, 1984-present

Assistant Dean, School of Engineering and Applied Science, University of Virginia, 1982-1985

Associate Professor of Engineering Physics, University of Virginia, 1977-1984

Assistant Professor of Engineering Physics, University of Virginia, 1971-1977

Assistant Professor of Physics, Southern Illinois University, 1969-1971.

Research Fellow, The Queen's University of Belfast, Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics, Belfast , Northern Ireland , 1968‑1969.

Research Fellow, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute, 1963-1964.

 Visiting Professor:

NRC Visiting Professor, Goddard Institute for Space Studies/ Columbia, 1997-1998

Visiting Professor, University of Paris, Orsay, summer 1997

Visiting Professor, Rockefeller University, 1991 - 1992

Visiting Professor, University of Catania, 1987

Visiting Professor, University of Uppsala, Uppsala Sweden, 1987-1995.

Visiting Researcher, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, CA, January 1986

Visiting Professor, Planetary Geoscience Division, University of Hawaii, 1986

Visiting Researcher, AT&T Bell Laboratories, Murray Hill, NJ, 1985

Visiting Researcher, Enrico Fermi Institute, University of Chicago, and Argonne National Laboratories 1981-1982

Sesquicentennial Associateship, Center for Earth and Planetary Physics, Harvard University, 1977-1978.

NATO Fellow, Physical Laboratory II, University of Copenhagen, Denmark, Summer 1976.

Researcher, Denver University, Department of Physics, Summer 1970.

Researcher, Sandia Corporation, 1965.

Selected Publications

Authored 240 Refereed papers, 15 Chapters, 2 Monographs

Johnson, R. E., Energetic Charged Particle Interaction with Atmospheres and Surfaces; Physics and Chemistry of Space. Springer﷓Verlag (1990).

Johnson, R.E., Surface Chemisry in the Jovian Magnetosphere Radiation Environment, In Chemical Dynamics in Extreme Environments (R. Dessler, Ed), Adv.Ser. In Phys. Chem. World Scientific, Singapore 11, Chap. 8, 390-419 (2001).

Johnson, R.E., Surface Boundary Layer Atmospheres, in Atmospheres in the Solar System: Comparative Aeronomy Geophysical Monograph 130, 203-219(2002).

Bringa, E.M. and R.E. Johnson, Coulomb Explosion and Thermal Spikes, Phys. Rev. Lett. 88,165501-1- 4 (2002).

Leblanc, F. and R.E. Johnson, Mercury’s Sodium Exosphere, Icarus 164, 261-281 (2003).

Bringa, E.M. and R.E. Johnson, A New Model for Cosmic-rays Ion Erosion of Volatiles from Grains in the interstellar Medium, Astronphys. J. 603, 159-164 (2004).

Johnson, R.E., T. I. Quickenden, P.D. Cooper, A.J. McKinley, and C. Freeman, The Production of Oxidants in Europa’s surface, Astrobiology v3, N4, 823-850 (2003).

Johnson, R.E., R.W. Carlson, J.F. Cooper, C. Paranicas, M.H. Moore, and M.C. Wong, Radiation Effects on the Surface of the Galilean Satellites, In Jupiter-The Planet, Satellites and Magnetosphere, Ed. F. Bagenal, T. Dowling, and W.B.McKinnon, Cambridge (2004) in press.