My biggest research interest is in the role of soil physical characteristics (e.g., pore size distribution and moisture content) to the formation of the microbial hotspot, carbon accumulation, and trace gas emission.
Influenced by my major advisor Dr. Alexandra Kravchenko, I use a combination of novel methodological approaches.
I use X-ray microtomography technique to analyze soil pore/matrix structures and organic matter distribution.
To examine microbial activity, I use Zymography to locate soil extracellular enzymes in 2-dimension.
Also, I track the transport of plant-derived carbon and nitrogen by using Stable Isotope Labeling methods.
My current research is based on switchgrass production system. Switchgrass is a promising second-generation bioenergy crop, but its environmental performance has not been fully investigated. As a graduate student collaborator at Kellogg Biological Station, I am studying the decomposition of switchgrass residues as a potential driver of nitrous oxide hotspots.
Research Keywords Switchgrass, Nitrous Oxide Emission, Microbial Hotspot, Priming Effect, Decomposition, Plant biodiversity
EducationPostdoctoral Associate | College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York, U.S.A (2022 - Current) Ph.D. | Plant Soil and Microbial Sciences, Michigan State University, Lansing, Michigan, U.S.A (2017 - 2021) Dissertation title: Change of Soil Micro-environments during Plant Decomposition and Its Effect on Carbon and Nitrogen Dynamics Certificate in Computational Modeling M.S | Environmental Science and Ecological Engineering, Korea University, Seoul, South Korea (2015 - 2017) B.S | Environmental Science and Ecological Enginnering, Korea University, Seoul, South Korea (2011 - 2015) Minor in Law and Public Administration Exchange student (Civil and Environmental Engineering) at Nanyang Techological Universiity, Singapore, Singapore (2014)
Language: English (U.S), Korean
Fellowships and Awards
2021 | Dissertation Completion Fellowship, Michigan State University, $10,000
2020 | Kirk and Marjorie Lawton Graduate Student Award, Michigan State University, $5,000
Environmental Science and Policy Program Travel Grand Award, $750
Early Career Scientist’s Travel Support, European Geophysical Union, $500
Graduate Student Travel Award, College of Agriculture and Natural Resources, $400
Michigan State University Graduate School Fellowship, $ 350
Michigan State University International Studies & Programs Travel Award, $200
2019 | Kellogg Biological Station LTER Student Research Fellowship, $6,500
Council of Graduate Students Conference Award, Michigan State University, $300
2017 | Environmental Science and Policy Program Doctoral Fellowship, Michigan State University $25,000
2016 | Brain Korea 21 Plus Student Scholarship, Government of Republic of Korea
2015 | Brain Korea 21 Plus Student Scholarship, Government of Republic of Korea
2014 | National Scholarship (I), Government of Republic of Korea
Choonpa-Chung-ha Hwang Scholarship, Korea University
2013 | Jangsehwan Memorial Scholarship, Korea University
2012 | The Welfare Section scholarship, Korea University
2011 | Special Scholarships, Korea University
K. Kim, J. Gill, N. Ostrom, H. Gandhi, M. Oerther, Y. Kuzyakov, A. Guber, A. Kravchenko, 2022. Soil pore architecture and rhizosphere legacy define N2O production in root detritusphere.
Soil Biology and Biochemistry, [link]
K. Kim, T. Kutlu, A. Kravchenko, A. Guber, 2021. Dynamics of N2O in vicinity of plant residues: a microsensor approach. Plant and Soil. [link]
J.D. Meadows, J.A. Breuer, S.N. Lavalle, M.R. Hirschenberger, M.M. Patel, D. Nguyen, A. Kim, J. Cassin, M.R. Gorman, D.K. Welsh, P.L. Mellon,and H.M. Hoffmann, 2021. Deletion of Six3 in post-proliferative neurons produces weakened SCN circadian output, improved metabolic function, and dwarfism in male mice. Molecular metabolism, p.101431. [link]
K. Kim, A. Guber, M. Rivers, A. Kravchenko, 2020. Contribution of decomposing plant roots to N2O emissions by water absorption. Geoderma 375, 114506. [link]
H. Zheng, K. Kim, A. Kravchenko, M. Rivers, A. Guber, 2020. Testing Os staining approach for visualizing soil organic matter patterns in intact samples via X-ray dual energy tomography scanning. Environmental Science and Technology. [link]
H. Bang, J. Kim, K. Kim, S Hyun., 2020, Effect of drying treatment on the leachability of metallic elements from weathered solid mine wastes. Chemosphere 248, 126111. [link]
K. Kim, J. Kim, K. Cho, J.G. Kim, S. Hyun., 2018. Analysis of the Resilience of Common-Pool Resources during Globalization: The Case of Jeju Common Ranches in Korea. Sustainability 10 (12), 4346. [link]
K. Kim J. Kim, S. Hyun., 2018. Soil attenuation of the leaching potential of mine-related metallic elements (Zn, As, and Cd) under different leachate solute compositions. Journal of environmental management 222, 402-408. [link]
Research ExperiencesGraduate Research Intern, Biogeochemistry of Agroecosystems, Department for Crop Sciences, University of Göttingen, Germany (2020, Postponed due to COVID19)
Research Assistant, National Science Foundation’s Geobiology and Low Temperature Geochemistry program, Award # 163099 (2017-current)
Researcher, Evaluating resilience of common pool resource system against globalization: the case of common ranch in Jeju Island, Ojung Eco Resilience Institute, Korea (2016)
Research Assistant, Technology development for monitoring of terrestrial ecosystem contamination and evaluation of environmental effects, Korea Environmental Industry Technology Institute (2015-2017)
Teaching ExperiencesTeaching Assistant, Advanced Statistics of Biologists (Graduate level course at Michigan State University, 2020).
Developed class materials, led lab session discussions, and helped student Q&A and grading.
Participant, Seminar class ‘Pathways to Scientific Teaching’ (2018).
Gained experience in material developments, instructional methods, and assessments.
Teaching Assistant, Basic Chemistry & Exercise I/II (Undergraduate level course, 2015-2017).
Developed instruction guidance for other teaching assistants, Managed midterm/final tests, and taught lab class session as an instructor
(4hr/week, 20 students/semester).
Teacher, Environmental education for elementary school students, Dongdaemun Community Center, Seoul, Korea (2013-2015).
Private Tutor, Highschool mathematics and English for 8 high school students (2012-2015).
Mentor, Jump-hackers 7th mentor for high school students (2012).
Other ExperiencesParticipant, Virtual 23rd National School on Neutron and X-ray Scattering, Jul 12-30 2021
Participant, 2021 Unisense virutal online workshop for microsensor users, Mar 15-18 2021
Consultant, Statistical Consulting Center, College of Agriculture and Natural Resource Biometry Group, Aug 2020 ~ May 2021
Participant, 6th Annual ASA, CSSA, SSSA Graduate Student Leadership Conference, Nov 9-13 2020
Session Organizer and Moderator, Carbon Accrual/Sequestration in Bioenergy Cropping System Session, Great Lakes Biological Research Center Sustainability Meeting, Oct 5-7 2020
Invited Student Speaker, Kellogg Biological Station Long Term Ecological Research Midterm Review, Sep 9 2020
Presenter, Kellogg Biological Station Long Term Ecological Research All Scientist Meeting, Sep 19-20 2019
Extension ActivitiesMy extension interests are in re-interpretation of scientific data to artworks as a tool to communicate with general public.
J. Lee, T. Ulbrich, K. Kim, A. Juyal, M. Oerther, A. Trusiak, C. Mammott, A. Kravchenko, 2021. A Look Under Ground: Why Root Interactions Matter for Plants, Climate, and Humans (Documentary video). Presented at MSU 2021 Science Festival, MSU Science-Communication
K. Kim, 2020. Soil Catalysts.
Presented at Catalyst: A virtual Sci-Art exhibition, MSU Science-Communication
K. Kim, M. Oerther, A. Kravchenko, 2019. Four Phases of Soil. Transformed soil X-ray microtomography images.
i) Kellogg Biological Station Allurement Salon, Nov 7 2019, Richland Community Hall, Michigan [Tweet]
ii) MSU Science-Communication Science-Art exhibition, Oct 19-Oct 30 2019, Wharton Center Great Hall, Michigan.
A. Guber, K. Kim, M. Oerther, A. Kravchenko, 2019. Water Under Our Feet.
A 3D hologram installation and living plants grown in transparent glass bead panel. Presented at DEPTH, June 8-Aug 17 2019, Detroit Science Gallery, Michigan.
Leadership and Service
Vice president, Student Council of College of Life Sciences and Biotechnology , Korea University (2013, elected position representing ~1,800 students)
Founder and Executive committee, Korea University Saving Environment Project KUSEP (2012-2016)
Vice president, Student Council of the Department of Environmental Science and Ecological Engineering , Korea University (2012, elected position representing ~350 students)
Executive committee, Department of Environmental Science and Ecological Engineering, Korea University (2011)
PresentationsK. Kim, J. Gill, N. Ostrom, H. Gandhi, M. Oerther, Y. Kuzyakov, A. Guber, A. Kravchenko, 2021. Decomposing in-situ grown switchgrass roots as hotspots of microbial activity and N2O emission: the combination of dual-isotope labeling and zymography. Presented at the annual meeting of European Geosciences Union, vEGU21: Gather Online. Apr 19-30.
K. Kim, J. Gill, N. Ostrom, H. Gandhi, M. Oerther, Y. Kuzyakov, A. Guber, A. Kravchenko, 2021. Plant-soil-microbial interactions in detritusphere and its impact on N2O emission. Presented at US Department Of Energy Genomic Science Program (Virtual). Selected student presenter representing Great Lakes Bioenergy Research Center
K. Kim, A. Guber, A. Kravchenko, 2020. Pore size effect on soil carbon dynamics during decomposition of switchgrass. Presented at the annual meeting of European Geosciences Union, EGU2020: Sharing Geoscience Online. [Video link]
K. Kim, J. Gil, H. Gandhi, N.E. Ostrom, A. Kravchenko, 2019. The influence of root decomposition on N2O production: Tracking the fate of N through isotopic labeling and enzyme distribution. Presented at the annual meeting of Soil Science Society of America, Nov 10-13, San Antonio, USA.
J. Gil, K. Kim, H. Gandhi, N.E. Ostrom, A. Kravchenko, 2019. The influence of root decomposition on N2O fluxes and N2O production microbial pathways. Presented at Soil Science Society of America, Nov 10-13, San Antonio, USA.
K. Kim, A. Guber, A. Kravchenko, 2019. Incorporated switchgrass leaves and roots and their contributions to CO2 and N2O emissions in soil with contrasting pore size distributions. Presented at the annual meeting of European Geosciences Union, Apr 7-12, Vienna, Austria.
K. Kim, A. Guber, A. Kravchenko, 2019. Is there a sponge effect in decomposing plant roots? Presented at the annual meeting of Soil Science Society of America, Jan 6-9, San Diego, USA.
K. Kim,, A. Guber, T. Kutlu, A. Kravchenko, 2018. Does presence of large soil pores influence plant root decomposition and N2O emission from decomposing plant roots? Presented at the annual meeting of the European Geosciences Union, Apr 8-13, Vienna, Austria.
K. Kim, J. Kim, S. Hyun, 2017. Fate and transport of Zn, As(V), and Cd in downgradient soils: competitive sorption of elements in heteromolar system, Presented at annual meeting of International Conference on Biological Waste as Resource. May 26-28, Hong-Kong, China.
K. Kim, J. Kim, S. Hyun, 2017. Transport of three metallic elements in leachate seepage by downgradient mine soils: the column study. Presented at the Korean Society of Soil and Groundwater Environment Spring meeting, May 18-20, Seoul, Republic of Korea.
K. Kim, J. Kim, S. Hyun, 2016. Evaluating community resilience of common pool resource system against globalization: the case of common ranch. Presented at the annual meeting of Soil Science Society of America, Nov 6-9, Phoenix, USA.
K. Kim, J. Kim, S. Hyun, 2016. Evaluating attenuation of metallic elements in leachate seepage by downgradient mine soils: competition effects. Presented at the Korean Society of Soil and Groundwater Environment Fall Meeting, Oct 13-14, Seoul, Republic of Korea.
Photos of academic activities
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