Barry Osmond is an Australian plant biologist well known for his studies of photosynthesis, through which plants turn sunlight, water and air into fuel and fibre. His career was stimulated by research opportunities at the Institute of Advanced Studies, Australian National University, interspersed with senior appointments in the United States (notably Duke University) and research collaborations in the United Kingdom at Cambridge and Sheffield and elsewhere.
His research on plant responses to excess light was supported by the US Department of Energy and other US government agencies, and by a Humboldt Research Award from the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation. Barry’s last appointment before retirement was as President and Director of Research at Columbia University's Biosphere 2 Center, a unique, visionary venture in experimental climate change science.
He is now pursuing new, nonintrusive methods for ‘near remote sensing’ of photosynthesis using FRRF/LIFT (fast repetition rate fluorescence/light induced fluorescence transient) technologies. LIFT/FRRF is well suited to capturing photosynthesis during sunflecks on old leaves in the shade.