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Solar Energy Research Conference at Rensselaer draws solar experts from around the world
Date:11/10/2011

Experts from around the globe came together at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute Nov. 4-5 at the Baruch '60 Center for Biochemical Solar Energy Research to discuss the development of technologies that run on the cleanest and safest energy production process on Earth: photosynthesis. The conference, titled "At the Interface of Natural and Artificial Photosynthesis," was co-chaired by K.V. Lakshmi, assistant professor of chemistry and chemical biology and the scientific lead at the Baruch '60 Center at Rensselaer, and John H. Golbeck, professor of biochemistry, molecular biology, and chemistry at Pennsylvania State University.

"The overwhelming need for carbon-neutral energy and the enormous potential of solar energy use is the driving force behind the recent conference at the Baruch '60 Center," Lakshmi said. "At the Center, we recognize that an understanding of the fundamental chemistry of biological solar energy conversion in nature is required to successfully achieve the goal of creating highly efficient and cost-effective bio-inspired solutions for solar fuels production. At the conference, we witnessed amazing research breakthroughs and important debates in the field of light-driven chemical catalysis. We are indeed pleased to have created an interdisciplinary forum [at the conference] that is the underlying basis of research on natural and artificial photosynthesis."

The conference brought together an interdisciplinary group of scientists from academia, government, and industry to discuss the next generation of solar technology based on the energy converting power of plants. The research is at the interface of chemistry, biology, physics, and materials. The work within the field seeks to map out the step-by-step process that nature's perfect green machines go through to convert solar rays into life-sustaining energy.

The process of photosynthesis is among the most efficient processes in the world. Capturing and replicating its power in new solar
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Contact: Gabrielle DeMarco
demarg@rpi.edu
518-276-6542
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
Source:Eurekalert

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