Associate Laboratory Director & Sr. Scientist, Berkeley Lab
Adjunct Professor, Environmental Science, Policy and Management, UC Berkeley
As the Associate Lab Director for Earth & Environmental Sciences Area at Berkeley Laboratory, Dr. Hubbard leads a premier group of ~500 staff that has a significant research portfolio in climate science, terrestrial ecosystem science, environmental and biological system science, fundamental geoscience, and subsurface energy resources. Research within this Area of Berkeley Lab is tackling some of the most pressing environmental and subsurface energy challenges of the 21st Century. Dr. Hubbard is also an Adjunct Professor at UC Berkeley in the Department of Environmental Science, Policy and Management. Dr. Hubbard earned her PhD in Civil and Environmental Engineering at UC Berkeley, and prior to joining Berkeley Lab, she was a geologist at the US Geological Survey and a geophysicist in industry.
As a Sr. Scientist at Berkeley Laboratory, Dr. Hubbard’s research focuses on quantifying how terrestrial environments function, with a particular emphasis on the development of geophysical approaches to provide new insights about processes relevant to contaminant remediation, carbon cycling, water resources, and subsurface energy systems. She leads the DOE Watershed Function Scientific Focus Area project and is a co-lead for the national DOE Subsurface (‘SubTER’) crosscut initiative.
Dr. Hubbard has served widely on many scientific committees and boards, including the DOE Biological and Environmental Research Program Advisory Committee (BERAC) and the California Council on Science and Technology. She has served on the editorial boards of JGR-Biosciences, Water Resources Research, Vadose Zone Journal and Journal of Hydrology. She has been honored by the scientific community with several awards, including: the Frank Frischknecht Award for leadership and innovation in near-surface geophysics, the Birdsall Dreiss Distinguished Lecturer Award, Distinguished Alumni of UC Berkeley, and as a Geological Society of America (GSA) Fellow.
Susan’s research focuses on advancing the use of geophysical methods for shallow subsurface characterization and monitoring and the use of integrated datasets to investigate environmental problems. She edited the first book on hydrogeophysics, and has published over 100 papers on this topic. Susan Hubbard’s research can be generally categorized into the following five areas:
- Hydrogeophysical research has focused on the development and testing of estimation methodologies that permit systematic fusion of geophysical and hydrogeological datasets for improved understanding of subsurface hydrogeological properties.
- Biogeophysical and Remediation Monitoring research includes the development and testing of petrophysical models and estimation frameworks that permit the interpretation of time-lapse geophysical signatures in terms of remediation-induced biogeochemical transformations.
- Permafrost Geophysics research focuses on characterizing active layer and permafrost variability in vulnerable Arctic ecosystems and on monitoring biogeochemical changes associated with freeze-thaw processes and carbon degradation.
- Precision Viticulture research focuses on integrating remote sensing and ground-based geophysical datasets with soil, plant, and climate-based information to guide the optimal development of new or management of existing vineyards in a manner that honors the natural variability of the site.
- Environmental Synthesis activities include those that strive to advance research across disciplinary boundaries and scales as needed to tackle 21st Century natural resource problems.