Chairperson, Plant and Soil Science
University of Delaware
Building 003 Auditorium
June 11, 2008
Dr. Sparks is internationally recognized for his research in the areas of: kinetics of geochemical processes and mechanisms of metal/oxyanion/nutrient reactions at biogeochemical interfaces using in-situ spectroscopic and microscopic techniques. He has pioneered the application of chemical kinetics to geosorbents including development of widely used methods, elucidation of rate-limiting steps and mechanisms, and coupling of kinetic studies with molecular scale investigations, particularly the use of synchrotron based x-ray absorption spectroscopy.
His discoveries on the formation and role of layered double hydroxide surface precipitates in the retention, fate and transport of metals in natural systems have received worldwide attention and had major impacts in the areas of sorption models, metal speciation and remediation/ contamination.
He is the author or coauthor of 281 publications. These include: 62 edited or authored books, 48 book chapters, and 171 refereed papers. He is the author of two widely adopted textbooks, Kinetics of Soil Chemical Processes and Environmental Soil Chemistry (two editions) published by Academic Press.
Dr. Sparks is one of eight University of Delaware faculty named as an ISI Highly Cited Researcher. He has given plenary and keynote presentations at scientific conferences throughout the world, and been a lecturer at 70 universities and institutes in North America, Europe, Asia, and Australia.