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Patron: Her Majesty the Queen


The Royal Scottish Society of Arts
Showcasing Scotland's Science, Technology and Innovation

5th Meeting of the 192nd Session (2012-2013)

What can we learn from photosynthesis about how to use solar energy to make fuels

Professor Richard J Cogdell FRS FRSE FRSA FSB
Hooker Professor of Botany
Director of Institute of Molecular, Cell and Systems Biology
Deputy Head of College of Medical, Veterinary and Life Sciences
University of Glasgow

In the Augustine United Church
41 George IV Bridge
Edinburgh, EH1 1EL
On Monday 18th February 2013, at 7pm

Mankind urgently needs to find sustainable ways to produce clean fuels, that at the very least can be carbon neutral. There is only one major chemical process on Earth that is able to use Solar Energy to make fuel, that is photosynthesis. This lecture will explain how photosynthesis works and how it can provide blueprint for the design of robust systems that also in principle use solar energy to make the fuels that we need for such things as transport.

Richard Cogdell has been at Glasgow University since 1975 and his research has been focused on trying to understand the structure and function of the biological components that are able to carry out the very early steps in photosynthesis. These processes are light-harvesting and the initial conversion of light energy into usable chemical energy. Recently he has been at the forefront of efforts to use this information to design systems capable of artificial photosynthesis aimed at making solar fuels.

Location of meeting

Complimentary tea, coffee and biscuits are served from about 6:40pm onwards before the meeting.

Members of the Public are welcome to attend

Dr Jane Ridder-Patrick, Secretary
Telephone: 0131 556 2161

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