Rebecca R. Hernandez is a doctoral student in the Department of Environmental Earth System Science and conducts research through the Department of Global Ecology at the Carnegie Institution for Science (Stanford, CA) under the advisement of Chris B. Field. Her work examines processes where human and natural systems interact and those that elucidate the functioning of Earth systems. Her research relies heavily on advanced ecological technologies (e.g., sensor networks), traditional field methods, and computational programming. Rebecca's research quantifies and informs a broad range of topics from global environmental change to renewable energy systems.
My dissertation research is looking at how changing rainfall patterns associated with climate change--longer dry periods and larger rainfall events--may affect nitrate leaching from agroecosystems. I am also comparing how different cropping system management (conventional, no-till, and organic) may moderate nitrogen cycling responses to this aspect of climate change.
under Professor Leif Thomas in the department of Environmental Earth
System Science at Stanford University. I did my undergraduate degree in
Physics at the Australian National University, with a study abroad year
at the University of California Santa Barbara. I became interested in
physical oceanography after doing a research internship on a laboratory
model of the thermohaline circulation at the geophysical fluid dynamics
laboratory at ANU.
interest revolve around the physical circulation of the equatorial
oceans and how processes on relatively short time-scales (months to
seconds), such as tropical instability waves (TIWs), can influence the
mean state and inter-annual variability of the equatorial oceans. In
particular, I have been applying ideas taken from midlatitude
submesoscale physics to understand the dynamics of TIWs and how they
influence vertical and lateral mixing processes at the Equator. TIWs
have been observed to modulate small-scale vertical mixing in the upper
Equatorial Undercurrent in the Pacific Ocean, which in turn influences
the sea surface temperature (SST) and processes such as the El Niño -
Southern Oscillation (ENSO), of great importance to global climate. I
use ocean modeling techniques combined with analysis of satellite and
in-situ oceanographic data to better understand how these multi-scale