Sequoia Scientific

Biography – Kirby Simon


Kirby Simon, Science & Technology Lead

I studied Chemical Engineering (BS 2018) and Materials Science and Engineering (MS 2019) at Washington University in St. Louis and became interested in R&D when I began undergraduate research my sophomore year. My passion for technology development expanded during my thesis work, and soon after graduation I joined an early-stage startup company designing, building, and testing prototype sensors for planetary science, ocean, climate, and agriculture applications.

I have helped develop >10 different optical sensor prototypes and participated in field campaigns deploying and testing technologies in different environments, from a lava field in Iceland to a corn field in Iowa. My experience in sensor development has largely focused on various spectroscopy techniques, including Raman, fluorescence, luminescence, laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy (LIBS), and near-infrared (NIR) reflectance, however I also have experience with lidar and imaging technologies.

My research interests revolve around developing and testing in-situ, active optical sensing technologies that enable scientific advancement in the characterization of the ocean and other extreme environments. Specific interests include (1) measuring the physical, optical, and/or chemical properties of constituents in aqueous environments, (2) advancing technologies to monitor carbon cycling in the ocean and support measuring, reporting, and verification (MRV) efforts for marine carbon dioxide removal (mCDR), and (3) developing instrumentation to validate remote sensing measurements and climate models and support efforts to study and mitigate climate change.