Andrew Babbin is a marine biogeochemist working on the nitrogen cycle, especially on the processes that return fixed nitrogen in the ocean back to nitrogen gas. This work is relevant, for instance, for understanding the controls on marine productivity and the ocean’s potential for storing carbon. Babbin has already made some major contributions to this field, especially with regard to the contributions of anaerobic metabolisms in the ocean. He aims to expand his observational biogeochemical studies by using microfluidic devices to reproduce a variety of chemical conditions simultaneously and finely control the chemistry experienced by microbes.
After earning a BS summa cum laude in Earth and Environmental Engineering from Columbia University in 2008, Babbin completed his PhD in 2014 under the direction of Professor Bess Ward in the Princeton University Department of Geosciences. After an NSF Postdoctoral Fellowship in Course I at MIT studying microbial community development in the environment, Babbin began his appointment as an assistant professor in the Department of Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences in January 2017.