The EnviroNano group, along with friends, family, nano-dogs and visitors at Manuel's farewell party.

We are the Environmental Nanoscience group at Virginia Tech, led by professors Michael Hochella Jr (University Distiguished Professor, Geosciences), Mitsu Murayama (Materials Science & Engineering), and Marc Michel (Geosciences). Our research, in a broad sense, aims to understand complex, environmentally relevant interactions between minerals, microbes, and metal contaminants. To this end our studies include laboratory experiments, mesocosm experiments, and field work, analyzed all the way down to the nanoscale.


  • John Rakovan, former post-doc at Mike's group, discovered the world's largest single crystal of gold ever found. This 218 gram gold nugget was found in Venezuela and is worth an estimated $1.5 million.

  • Congratulations to Hannah King for a new research award from the Geological Society of America ($1,500 award).
  • Hannah King was one of four finalists in the College of Science Roundtable's "make-a-difference" Scholarship ($10,000 award). 
  • Felicitations to Mariana Quadros (Nina) for her marriage on the beautiful Brazilian island of Florianópolis.
  • Great achievement of Hannah King awarded with the Department of Geosciences Research Award in honor of Charles J. Gose.

[last updated April 17, 2014]

Recent Publications

  • Johnson C.A., Freyer G., Fabisch M., Caraballo M.A., Kuesel K., Hochella Jr M.F. Observations and assessment of iron oxide and green rust nanoparticles in metal-polluted miner drainage within a steep redox gradient. Environmental Chemistry, 2014 (in press). [Abstract]
  • Kim B., Richardson C.J., and Hochella M.F., Jr. (2013) Nanoscale analytical transmission electron microscopy techniques applicable to wetland research and monitoring. In: Methods in Biogeochemistry of Wetlands, Soil Science Society of America Book Series 10 (R. D. DeLaune et al, Editors), pp. 857-878.
  • Caraballo M.A., Rimstidt J.D., Macías F., Nieto J.M., and Hochella M.F., Jr. (2013) Metastability, nanocrystallinity and pseudo-solid solution constraints to schwertmannite solubility. Chemical Geology, 360/361, 22-31. [Abstract]
  • French R.A., Monsegue N., Murayama M., Hochella M.F., Jr. (2013) The structure and transformation of the nanomineral schwertmannite: A synthetic analog representative of field samples. Physics and Chemistry of Minerals. [Abstract] 

Dec. 2007 - Wigginton, Haus (Plathe), Hochella   

Dec. 2008 - Hochella (ed.) and Elements co-founder

June 2011 - Madden, Hochella et al

2012 - Ch.1 Hochella, Aruguete, Kim, Madden

April 2012 - Bojeong Kim