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For the past four years, Samuel Weaver and his company, Proton Power, have been developing a system of creating hydrogen from biomass materials.

He’ll be discussing that process and its applications at the Science Forum on Friday.

The Science Forum is a weekly brown-bag lunch series that allows professors and area scientists to share their research with the general public through a conversational presentation.

The weekly presentations begin at noon on Fridays in Room C-D of Thompson-Boling Arena. Attendees can bring lunch or purchase it at the arena. Each presentation is forty minutes long and is followed by a question-and-answer session. Science Forum presentations are free and open to the public.

Weaver and his company use biomass—any plant-based material, including waste—to create hydrogen at a low cost.

“From that, we can use it all the ways we use energy,” he said. That means it can be used as a power source.

“We’ve had people come see it from all over the world,” Weaver said.

Future Science Forums will feature:

  • February 8: Thomas C. Namey, former professor of medicine and nutrition and former associate director of the UT Nutrition Institute, presenting “Low Testosterone (‘Low T’): Implications for Men’s Health Far Beyond Sex.”
  • February 15: Linda C. Kah, Ken Walker Associate Professor of Earth and Planetary Sciences, discussing “Curiouser and Curiouser: NASA’s Curiosity Rover’s Mission in Gale Crater.”
  • February 22: Lt. Robby Nix, critical care paramedic for the Rural Metro Fire Department, presenting “Firefighter Paramedics and the Hot Potato Baby—It’s Not What You Think.”
  • March 1: Juan-Carlos Idrobo, research scientist at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, discussing “Exploring the Universe One Atom at a Time.”
  • March 8: Dr. Paul Campbell Erwin, professor and head of the Department of Public Health, presenting “John Snow and Cholera: The Foundation for Modern Disease Investigation.”
  • March 15: Kevin Hoyt, director of UT Forest Resources AgResearch and Education Center, presenting “The Proposed UT AgResearch Gas and Oil Well Research Project.”
  • April 5: William T. Bogart, president of Maryville College and professor of economics there, discussing “Cargo Cult Economic Policy: Urban Development and Green Energy.”
  • April 12: Stephanie K. Drumheller-Horton, instructor of earth and planetary sciences, presenting “Crocodylian Bite Marks in the Fossil Record.”
  • April 19: Devon M. Burr, assistant professor of earth and planetary sciences, discussing “The Moon That Would Be a Planet: Saturn’s Giant Titan.”
  • April 26: Joan Markel, curator of Civil War exhibits at the McClung Museum, presenting “Digging into Our Civil War Past.”

The Science Forum is sponsored by the UT Office of Research. For more information about the Science Forum, visit the Office of Research website.

C O N T A C T :

Amy Blakely (865-974-5034,

Holly Gary (865-974-2225,