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Katherine Ratliff, Ph.D.

Physical Scientist
EPA's Center for Environmental Solutions and Emergency Response

Current Research

My current research is focused on understanding and quantifying how contaminants move around in the environment, as well as predicting the efficacy of different decontamination and disinfection practices in complex settings. A better understanding of these contaminant transport processes enables us to assess where contamination is most likely to be present in the environment and to more effectively and efficiently clean up indoor and outdoor areas that are hazardous to public health. I achieve these research goals by developing models that are informed by advanced data collection (in the lab and field settings) and analysis techniques.

Why This Science Matters

The ability to track where contamination is and how to clean it up is critical for protecting public health and the environment. My research informs communities in the United States and globally on how to address these important issues in increasingly complex and challenging environmental settings. I am proud to support our partners in addressing these challenges and that my models and data analysis techniques are being applied globally.


2017 Ph.D. in Earth and Ocean Sciences, Duke University
2011 B.A. in Earth and Environmental Sciences, Vanderbilt University


2016-2017 Jo Rae Wright Fellowship for Outstanding Women in Science
2016 Dean’s Award for Outstanding Ph.D. Student Manuscript
2014-2017 National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship

EPA Publications

Katherine Ratliff's publications in EPA's Science Inventory

Related Resources

Homeland Security Research Program
Center for Environmental Solutions and Emergency Response (CESER)
Contact CESER