Robert Nelson

Robert K. Nelson
Research Specialist
Dept. Marine Chemistry & Geochemistry
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution
(31 years at WHOI)

Facilities Manager - WHOI - Organic Geochemistry Analysis Laboratory - GC×GC Facility
Facility web site:

Adjunct Researcher, Curtin University (Perth, Western Australia)
Western Australia - Organic and Isotope Geochemistry Centre

Nelson US Patents/Awards/Honors

United States Patents:
2010 United States Patent #7805979 – Application #EP20070854268, Publication #EP2084525 B1 (also published as CA2667523A1, CA2667523C, CN101680862A, DE602007006229D1, EP2084525A2, US7805979, US20080105032,WO2008051900A2, WO2008051900A3) - High accuracy contamination estimation in hydrocarbon samples using GC×GC. Inventers – Oliver C Mullins, Robert K. Nelson, Bhavani Raghuraman, Christopher Michael Reddy. Patent application filed October 22, 2007 – publication date April 28, 2010.

2014 United States Patent - Application #US 13/437,759, Publication #US20130060477 A1 (also published as WO2012135858A2 and WO2012135858A3) – Systems and methods for topographic analysis. Inventors - Ananya Sen Gupta, Christopher M. Reddy, Robert Nelson. Patent application filed April 2, 2012 – publication date March 7, 2013.

Awards & Honors:
2017 First runner up for ES&T's best technology paper of 2016. ES&T chooses its best papers by asking the ES&T editorial advisory board to read and rank a subset of papers recommended by its Associate Editors in categories of technology, science, policy and features. Our paper, Simulating Gas–Liquid-Water Partitioning and Fluid Properties of Petroleum under Pressure: Implications for Deep-Sea Blowouts, was chosen by the board members from about 1600 papers that ES&T published in 2016.

2015 Al Vine Senior Technical Staff Award. The Vine award is named for former WHOI physical oceanographer and visionary Allyn Vine, for whom the deep submersible ALVIN is named. Vine was widely recognized as a leading proponent for manned exploration of the deep sea, and championed construction of other tools for the oceanographic community, often producing new techniques and unusual equipment. The Vine award is given in recognition of achievement and technical excellence and provides $50,000.00 for salary support.

2014 Penzance Award. Fye Lab Senior Technical Staff. An award given to a group "for sustained exceptional performance, for outstanding representation of the WHOI spirit, and for major contributions to the personal and professional lives of our staff."

2013 Spring ENFL R.A. Glenn Award for presentation and preprint titled "Sulfur group type response to an Oxidative Desulfurization Treatment". This award, for the most innovative and interesting paper presented at each ACS national meeting, was established in 1956, by the Division of Fuel Chemistry, in cooperation with Bituminous Coal Research, Inc. In 1972, the award was named in honor of Richard A. Glenn, who served as Assistant Director of Research at Bituminous Coal Research, Inc. and as Chairman of the Fuel Chemistry Division in 1960. Symposia chairs nominate up to two (2) papers from their sessions which they judge to be the most innovative and interesting original new work (not overviews). A selection committee then reviews all the nominated papers and attends the presentations. Based on the oral presentation, technical excellence, and the quality of the preprint, the committee selects the paper to receive the R.A. Glenn Award.

2008 Invited Talk. Gordon Research Conference – Organic Geochemistry. Comprehensive two-dimensional gas chromatographic analysis (GC×GC) of bicadiinanes in crude oil – a comparison of oils from the Ardjuna basin, northwest Java; the Seria oil field, Brunei; and two oils from south Texas, USA. August 7, 2008 Holderness School, Plymouth, New Hampshire, USA.

2007 John B. Phillips Award. In honor of the inventor of comprehensive two-dimensional gas chromatography (GC×GC). This award is chosen by an international committee composed of GC×GC specialists and given to the authors of a manuscript judged to have the highest potential impact on the future of GC×GC science.

2005 Comprehensive Two-dimensional Gas Chromatogram featured on the cover of ACS journal Analytical Chemistry (November 15, 2005).

Contact Information:; 508-289-3452