Associate Professor of Crop Science, University of Nottingham

I study photosynthesis in crop plants. In particular my group is interested in the regulation of photosynthesis in response to environmental factors in all types of cropping systems. Why is this important? It is clear that photosynthesis operates below optimal efficiency in the field and if we could improve this it would have an impact on grain yield. I use model crops such as rice to understand the genetic basis for processes such as photoprotection.

Conversely we are also studying how the use of controlled environment systems can be optimised to bring photosynthesis and resource use efficiency closer to their maximum. This has relevance for horticulture and so-called vertical farming. I have an active research programme using LEDs to develop smart growth systems for horticulture and vertical farming systems, funded by the Technology Strategy Board (details to be given soon).

Techniques used:

Photosynthetic physiology: Infra red gas exchange, chlorophyll fluorescence quenching analysis

Plant canopy analysis : light interception, analysis of radiation use effiicency, field analyses of chlorophyll fluorescence, novel techniques for 3-D imaging of plant canopies and modelling analysis of photosynthesis in plant canopies

​Plant biochemistry : Protein analysis (electrophoresis) , pigment analysis (HPLC), microarray RNA analysis

Experience

  • –present
    Associate Professor of Crop Science, University of Nottingham