ESP Biography

COLLIN STEEN, PhD Student studying physical chemistry

Major: Chemistry

College/Employer: UC Berkeley

Year of Graduation: G

Picture of Collin Steen

Brief Biographical Sketch:

I am a second-year PhD student in Graham Fleming's group, specializing in physical chemistry and biophysics. I use lasers to study events in photosynthesis. Said another way, I shoot lasers at plants and algae. Specifically, my research utilizes transient absorption spectroscopy and fluorescence lifetime measurements to uncover the molecular mechanisms underlying photoprotection.

Past Classes

  (Look at the class archive for more.)

Photosynthesis and Lasers in Splash Fall 18
Photosynthesis provides all of the Earth’s oxygen, plays a pivotal role in the global climate, and serves as the energy source for essentially all living things on Earth. Specifically, it enables plants and other organisms to capture sunlight and convert it to usable chemical energy. In this course, we will first discuss the underlying principles behind photosynthesis with an emphasis on the structure of the photosynthetic apparatus. We will then examine the properties of light and the physical processes of absorption and fluorescence before learning how we can make use of specialized laser systems to study these processes in intact photosynthetic organisms.