KEVIN PERRY portrait
  • Presidential Societal Impact Scholar, Atmospheric Sciences
  • Professor, Atmospheric Sciences


  • B.S., Meteorology, Iowa State University of Science and Technology
  • Ph.D., Atmospheric Sciences, University of Washington

Research Summary

Air Pollution and Atmospheric Chemistry: identification of the sources, sinks, transport, optical properties, climatic impacts, and health effects of atmospheric particulate matter; transport and deposition of atmospheric mercury to aquatic ecosystems; intercontinental bacterial transport on mineral dust particles; development of instrumentation and analytical techniques to measure the size- and time-resolved elemental composition of airborne particulate matter


Dr. Kevin Perry has more than 23 years of management and research experience in the areas of ambient air quality monitoring, instrumentation/analytical technique development, source apportionment, atmospheric dry deposition, and the climatic and health effects of particulate matter. His experience includes management and participation in ~20 ambient air monitoring projects ranging from local-scale pollution events (e.g. plumes from the World Trade Center collapse, smoke from pyrotechnic displays) to the intercontinental transport of pollutants (e.g., Aerosol Characterization Experiment – ACE-Asia, International Transport and Chemical Transformation Experiment – ITCT2K2). Dr. Perry has deployed ambient air monitoring equipment at ground-based, ship-based, airborne, and high-altitude mountain observatories around the globe. He also developed a technique using the Advanced Light Source (ALS) Synchrotron at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL) to use Synchrotron-Xray Fluorescence (S-XRF) to characterize the size- and time-resolved elemental composition of atmospheric particulate matter.

Dr. Perry’s current research is focused on the emission of dust from the exposed portion of the Great Salt Lake. He has spent more than 200 days conducting field work at the GSL and has completed a comprehensive soil survey of the entire 800 square miles of exposed lakebed. Previous research focused on quantifying the effects of particulate matter on birth outcomes and gastrointestinal health using a retrospective analysis of existing air quality data with patient medical and birth records from the Utah Population Database (UPDB). Dr. Perry has also completed research projects related to the transport and deposition of atmospheric mercury.

Dr. Perry teaches a wide variety of courses within the Department of Atmospheric Sciences including an Honors think tank course on Air Quality, Health, and Society. He is one of two members in the College of Mines and Earth Sciences to receive the University of Utah Early Career Teaching Award. Dr. Perry is a member of the American Meteorological Society, the American Geophysical Union, and has published 38 peer-reviewed journal articles and two book chapters.