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Illinois IGB


Art of Science Gallery 07

Machinery of the Ghost
Machinery of the Ghost

Zeiss Sigma VP 3View Serial Block-Face Scanning Electron Microscope

Aleel Grennan and Kingsley Boateng

Donald Ort Laboratory

Funded by the DOE
Plants capture sunlight and convert its energy into sugar, a process known as photosynthesis. One might expect that plants have evolved to capture light as efficiently as possible. Instead, many plants, including food crops, have optimized their ability to out-compete neighbors, a strategy that results in inefficient capture and use of sunlight. This image shows the arrangement of sorghum leaf cells that contribute to photosynthesis and the circulation of important molecules. By understanding and influencing this internal structure, researchers hope to develop more efficient and productive crops.