College of Sciences

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Understanding how salt marsh grass stays healthy is of crucial ecological importance, and studying the ways bacteria interact with these plants is key. Thanks to recent advances in genomic technology, Georgia Tech biologists have begun to reveal never-before-seen ecological processes.
A view of Tech Tower from Crosland Tower. Photo: Georgia Tech
This fall, the College of Sciences will debut three new minors, a new Ph.D. program, and a new “4+1” B.S./M.S. degree program. 
Jean Lynch-Stieglitz
The College of Sciences is pleased to announce the appointment of Jean Lynch-Stieglitz as chair of the School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, effective September 2024.
To determine if this passive control hypothesis was correct, a team of roboticists, physicists, and engineers led by Daniel Goldman, the Dunn Family Professor in the School of Physics, and Hang Lu, professor and Cecil J. “Pete” Silas Chair in the School of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, developed a limbless robot. This robot helped them better understand the biology that makes worms and snakes so agile. The result is a robot that could be vital for missions in which humans and wheeled robots are limited, such as search and rescue, industrial maintenance, and planetary exploration.
Taking a sediment core from the Florida Straits.
In a first-of-its kind study, Georgia Tech researchers have investigated how the prehistoric weakening of a major ocean current led to a decline in ocean nutrients and negative impacts on North Atlantic ocean life. The results support predictions about how our oceans might react to a changing climate — and what that means for ocean life.
Mechanical engineering researchers Gregory Sawicki and Aaron Young recently received $2.6 million from NIH to pursue a project focused on using optimization and artificial intelligence to personalize exoskeleton assistance for individuals with symptoms resulting from stroke.

Experts In The News

Researchers at Georgia Tech analyzed the weakening of ocean currents and how it could affect ocean life. A report published by Science studied the reaction of ocean currents to climate change, resulting in a potential decline in biological activity and nutrients in the North Atlantic. Using empirical data led by Jean Lynch-Stieglitz, chair of the School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, the study observed the sediments at the Gulf Stream's origin. The region plays an important role in the North Atlantic's biological activity, particularly the ocean currents that could weaken due to greenhouse gas emissions and climate change. (This also appeared at

Nature World News May 13, 2024

Forecasters are predicting a busy Atlantic hurricane season. The projections point to a potential weather double-whammy, said Zachary Handlos, senior academic professional at the School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences. “The forecasts are expecting a higher frequency of storms this year, potentially aligned with record-breaking years like 2020 and 2005,” he noted. “But then on top of that there's a high chance of a few major hurricanes that could be thrown in the mix of all the named storms.” 

Thirty named storms formed in 2020. Fifteen Atlantic cyclones became hurricanes in 2005 including Katrina, which caused nearly $200 billion in damage and led to more than 1,800 deaths. Both seasons were influenced by La Niña patterns, which involve the cooling of tropical Pacific waters but lead to a reduction in vertical wind shear that acts as a brake against Atlantic hurricanes. This year, warming Atlantic waters and the expected arrival of a La Niña pattern are driving expectations for a hyperactive hurricane season. “The waters are already warmer than usual in the Atlantic, and warm water is a key ingredient for kind of starting off and forming hurricanes,” Handlos said. “If you mix that trend on top of the possible La Niña setup, it's just a potential recipe for disaster.” 

Savannah Now May 13, 2024

In a recent paper in the Proceedings of the National Academy of SciencesSchool of Biological Sciences Associate Professor William Ratcliff and Emma Bingham, student in the Interdisciplinary Graduate Program in Quantitative Biosciences, put forward a brand new idea, which they tested in a computational model. Bingham and Ratcliff suggest that the way prokaryotic and eukaryotic genomes respond to population size may make or break their chances of evolving multicellularity. It’s a fascinating hypothesis, and if further work bears it out, it could fundamentally change how scientists conceive of this transition and challenge a key assumption they make about evolutionary forces.

Quanta Magazine May 2, 2024

Spark: College of Sciences at Georgia Tech

Welcome — we're so glad you're here. Learn more about us in this video, narrated by Susan Lozier, College of Sciences Dean and Sutherland Chair.