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UMass Lowell Professor Named One of ‘World’s Most Influential Scientific Minds’

Gamache Selected for Ranking of Best and Brightest in Research

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Prof. Robert Gamache


Contacts for media: Christine Gillette, 978-934-2209 or and  Nancy Cicco, 978-934-4944 or

LOWELL, Mass. – UMass Lowell Prof. Robert Gamache is one of “The World’s Most Influential Scientific Minds,” according to a new ranking.

Gamache – a faculty member in UMass Lowell’s Department of Earth, Environmental and Atmospheric Sciences – was selected for the prestigious list of scientific researchers based on the volume of their published work and how often that research is cited by other researchers in their own efforts. Gamache and others chosen for the ranking have the top 1 percent of the most referenced research published from 2002 to 2012.

The ranking was developed by Thomson Reuters using two of its web-based platforms for research, InCites Essential Science Indicators and Web of Science, and in conjunction with Shanghai Jiao Tong University, which also produces a global academic ranking of universities. 

Gamache, whose research focuses on the atmospheres of planets, is highlighted in the “Highly Cited Researchers” section of the report.

“These top researchers around the globe have earned their distinction by publishing the highest number of [research] articles that rank among those most frequently cited by fellow researchers. They are the people who are on the cutting edge of their fields. They are performing and publishing work that their peers recognize as vital to the advancement of their science. These researchers are, undoubtedly, among the most influential scientific minds of our time,” Thomson Reuters stated in announcing the ranking.

“Citations offer a direct testament to work that scientists themselves judge to be the most important to ongoing research. By analyzing these citation connections, one can identify the most impactful people, publications, programs, and more,” Gordon Macomber, managing director of Thomson Reuters Scientific and Scholarly Research, states in the announcement of the ranking. “The listings in ‘Highly Cited Researchers’ truly reflect positive assessment by peers, and constitute a searchable database containing an elite selection of the world’s most influential scientific researchers.”

“To be included in such elite company is quite an honor. Also, having the list decided by raw numbers, through citations, rather than by vote like a popularity contest, was gratifying,” said Gamache, who also serves as associate vice president of academic affairs, student affairs and international relations for the University of Massachusetts system.

Gamache is an expert in the spectral studies and modeling of molecules in the atmospheres of planets, including Earth, Venus and Mars. He uses quantum mechanical and semi-classical calculations of quantities needed to understand measurements obtained through remote-sensing (satellite, balloon, aircraft and some ground-based) as well as laboratory experiments. To date, he has presented 202 papers on the subject at professional conferences, published 128 articles in peer-reviewed journals, authored more than 40 scientific reports and delivered numerous lectures around the United States and internationally.

Gamache, whose research is funded by the National Science Foundation, is collaborating with a number of groups involved in satellite measurements, including those from NASA’s Aqua and Aura satellites, the Jet Propulsion Laboratory’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter and the Orbiting Carbon Observatory-2, and the European Space Agency’s IASI and Venus Express satellites.

“We are thrilled that Prof. Gamache, a highly accomplished scientist, was recognized by Thomson Reuters,” said UMass Lowell Provost Ahmed Abdelal. “UMass Lowell is exceptionally strong in the natural sciences and Prof. Gamache’s recognition affirms this.”

Gamache divides his time between the UMass system offices and the UMass Lowell campus, where he conducts his research. Working with him are post-doctoral researchers and undergraduate students. This fall, he will teach a graduate course called “Remote Sensing of Planetary Atmospheres.”

A faculty member of UMass Lowell since 1978, Gamache earned a master’s degree in molecular physics and a Ph.D. in physical chemistry at UMass Amherst. In addition to research and teaching, he served as dean of the UMass School of Marine Sciences from 2005 to 2012 and is co-director of UMass Lowell’s Peace and Conflict Studies Institute, which presents the annual Greeley Scholar for Peace Studies and other programs.

Gamache said his honor is yet another recognition that “the world is catching on” that UMass Lowell has “exceptional faculty researchers” in many fields.

UMass Lowell is a national research university located on a high-energy campus in the heart of a global community. The university offers its 17,000 students bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees in business, education, engineering, fine arts, health, humanities, sciences and social sciences. UMass Lowell delivers high-quality educational programs, vigorous hands-on learning and personal attention from leading faculty and staff, all of which prepare graduates to be ready for work, for life and for all the world offers.