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The Movers and Shakers Behind the Science



Assistant Professor of Practice
Assistant Professor of Research

Dr. Johnson earned her B.S. in Physics with a minor in Mathematical Sciences from Michigan Technological University and her Ph.D. in Atmospheric Science from Purdue University. Her work has tackled a wide range of topics and scientific methods including airborne measurements of water vapor in pre-depression areas over the Atlantic, laboratory studies of water ice nucleation in the atmospheres of Earth and Mars, high-resolution single cloud models for comparison with Earth maritime cumulus observations, and the development and use of instrumentation for exoplanet cloud studies.



Graduate Researcher - Ph.D.

Colin earned his B.S. in Physics with an Astrophysics concentration from Towson as a University Honors Scholar. Though his first undergraduate work focused on ionized gas surrounding distant galaxies, he fell in love with planetary science after an extended internship at the Applied Physics Laboratory (APL). At APL, he studied icy polar deposits on the planet
Mercury and the geochemistry of meteorites in a laboratory. Recently, he has become fascinated by the physics occurring within the atmospheres of other worlds. After graduate school, he plans
on building a career as a planetary scientist.



Graduate Researcher - M.S.

Kevin graduated from Purdue University in 2016 with a BS in Industrial Engineering. His original undergraduate work focused on Optimization and Human Factors. After graduation, he discovered a passion for space science and was inspired to pursue additional schooling, where he is currently studying Astrobiology by combining curricula from Biology and EAPS. In that capacity, he joined the SEND lab of Dr. Shalamar Armstrong, where his research has focused on studying how the soil microbial community responds to cover crop degradation. He is now excited for the opportunity to combine his eclectic multidisciplinary background with his interests in the study of exoplanets.

Valeria Garcia .png


Undergraduate Research

Valeria is currently a senior studying Atmospheric Science and Planetary Science. From participating in severe storms field work in the Great Plains to predicting hurricane genesis on simulated exoplanets, Valeria has participated in a variety of Earth-based and planetary-based research projects during her time at Purdue. Her interest in cloud physics led her to join the Cloud Lab in Fall 2020 where she studies Martian and Lunar cloud microphysics. She looks forward to further expanding her knowledge and applying it to worlds vastly different from our own.



Undergraduate Researcher

Logan Grey is a senior majoring in Physics with a concentration in Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences and is pursuing minors in Sustainable Environments as well as Natural Resources and Environmental Science. He has developed a passion for the environment and the natural phenomena of the universe after visiting several national parks and seeing how they relate to everyday life. Logan is a member of the Purdue chapter of the Society of Physics Students. After graduating, he plans to pursue graduate school and later work for an environmental government agency, but for now is excited about his research with the Johnson Cloud Lab.



Undergraduate Researcher

Julianna Heptinstall is a senior studying both Atmospheric Science and Planetary Science. She has always been fascinated by the weather and recently has taken an interest in how atmospheric properties can be applied to the ocean and other planets. Julianna is a member of the Purdue University Meteorological Association and one of the founders of the Planetary Science Society of Purdue. She is also a student in the Purdue Honors College and holds multiple positions in Purdue’s chapter of Kappa Delta Sorority. After graduation, Julianna plans to continue her education and later work in public outreach dealing with severe weather events.



Undergraduate Researcher

Katherine is a junior studying Planetary Science with a double minor in Astronomy and Mathematics. Katherine particularly enjoys the study of exoplanets and how knowledge can be applied outside of the solar system. She is a part of the Purdue Astronomy Club as well as the Purdue Honors College and has enjoyed the opportunities given from both. After graduation, Katherine hopes to continue onto graduate school to study cosmology and the evolution of our universe.



Undergraduate Researcher

Jasmine Singh is a senior double majoring in Planetary Science and Atmospheric Science. Ever since she was little, she has had a passion for space and space travel. Jasmine believes humanity's curiosity is what drives us to explore unknown worlds in and out of our solar system. In our species' insatiable hunger for answers within our universe, She believes that one of the most intriguing of those questions is about other planets' atmospheres, which will help us in the search for signs of extraterrestrial life. She interned at NASA Goddard this past summer, working on an exoplanet climate model emulator, focusing on factors that influence exoplanet habitability. After completing her undergraduate studies, Jasmine plans on taking a gap year to work at NASA, and then applying to obtain her Ph.D. in Planetary Science. 

Listed from most recent with title held as part of the JCL

  • Matt Weller - Postdoctoral Researcher @ Brown University

  • Natalie Grober - Undergraduate @ Purdue University in Planetary Science and English; Joined the lab as part of the Summer Stay program at Purdue

  • Robert Washington - Undergraduate @ Purdue University in Planetary Science

  • David Tersegno - PhD student @ Brown University in Earth, Environmental and Planetary Sciences

  • Dana Altoaimi - Undergraduate @ Brown University in Earth, Environmental and Planetary Sciences; joined the lab as part of the KAUST Gifted Student Program

  • Kimberly Hernandez - Undergraduate @ Wellesley College in Physics; joined the lab as part of Leadership Alliance program at Brown University

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