About Me

A picture of Eddie Smiling I'm an Assistant Professor of Astrobiology in the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences at the University of California at Riverside (UCR). I was previously a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Georgia Institute of Technology (2019-2020) and a NASA Postdoctoral Program Fellow at UCR (2016-2019). I received my PhD in 2016 at the University of Washington with dual titles in astronomy and astrobiology. I completed my undergraduate degrees in astronomy and physics at the Florida Institute of Technology. I also spent two lovely summers researching and observing comets as an undergraduate at Lowell Observatory in Flagstaff, AZ.

My research interests and activities include observations of Earth as an exoplanet; climate, photochemical, and radiative transfer modeling of terrestrial planet atmospheres; and generating synthetic spectra of model exoplanets. I'm particularly interested in work that can inform our ability to characterize Earth-sized planets in the habitable zones of their host stars, especially in search of remotely-detectable biosignatures. I'm also interested in exploring the nuances of planetary habitability, such as the differences between planetary environments that suitable for microorganisms and those that may be more amenable for advanced life like animals on Earth. You can find out more about my research on my research page.

When I was a graduate student at UW, I enjoyed being involved with various activities around campus. I served as a senator on an eclectic set of committees in the Graduate and Professional Student Senate for five years, including as an Executive Senator. I was also a community events organizer for the Pre-Major in Astronomy Program, which provides support and mentoring to underrepresented students in astronomy and the sciences. I enjoy public outreach and have taught K12 and undergraduate students about astronomy at UW's on-campus planetarium. Recently I have enjoyed giving public science lectures as part of the "Are We Alone?" lecture series at UCR's Palm Desert campus.