Annabel Edwards

Annabel Edwards

Associate Professor
James and Carolyn Gillingham Endowed Chair
Position Type
- Present
B.A., Williams College; Ph.D., University of Wisconsin-Madison


She studies the diffusion of water in mixed-phase thin films to better understand water movement in complex mixtures such as those found in atmospheric secondary organic aerosols and hydrophobic coatings in nature.

The research questions I am interested in focus on the molecular level details of surfaces and thin films in nature.  As boundaries between two phases, surfaces and thin films provide unique environments for chemical reactions and molecular transport.  Our studies currently focus on water uptake and movement in films that mimic brown carbon atmospheric aerosols. We have recently studied water diffusion in mixed-phase wax films and measured the role of the film’s solid fraction on water diffusivity. We use attenuated total reflection infrared spectroscopy (ATR-IR) to determine the rate of water hydration and dehydration in these different films.

We also collaborate with Dr. Joe Reczek’s research group to investigate the surface assembly of naphthalene diimides. We use polarized (ATR-IR) spectroscopy to investigate molecular orientation and ordering. A Langmuir trough allows us to manipulate film packing at the air-water interface before transfer to a solid surface.



Widmer, D.R., Calhoun, D.F., Thurston, D., Edwards, A.M., “Water diffusivity in a mixed phase binary system: effective water diffusion coefficients in tetradecanol-eicosanol mixtures.” Fluid Phase Equilibria (2014), 379, 157-166.

Edwards, A.M., Ludwig, L.D., “Diffusion and random walks” peer reviewed education materials for mathematics and chemistry developed for the Capital University National Science Foundation grant Computational Science across the Curriculum (DUE 9952806) (2011).

(Publications below under Annabel H. Muenter)

Muenter, A.H., Hentschel, J., Börner, H. Brezesinski, G. “Characterization of peptide-guided polymer assembly at the air/water interface” Langmuir (2008), 24(7), 3306-3316.

Muenter, A.H.; DeZwaan, J.L.; Nathanson, G.M. “Interfacial interactions of DCl with salty glycerol solutions of KI, NaI, LiI, and NaBr” Journal of Physical Chemistry C (2007), 111(41), 15043-15052.

Muenter, A.H.; DeZwaan, J.L.; Nathanson, G.M. “Collisions of DCl with Pure and Salty Glycerol: Enhancement of Interfacial D to H Exchange by Dissolved NaI” Journal of Physical Chemistry B (2006), 110(10), 4881-4891.


“Measuring water diffusion coefficients in mixtures of long-chain alcohols.” Oral Presentation, American Chemical Society Colloids and Surface Science Symposium, June 2013.

“Studying temperature dependent water uptake by wax films using attenuated total reflection infrared spectroscopy.” Oral Presentation, American Chemical Society National Meeting, August 2011.


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