It is strange and fascinating, and probably true, that non-trivial quantum effects play functional roles in several biological systems. I shall give an overview of three systems: photosynthesis, the avian compass, and (very controversial) olfaction, i.e. the sense of smell. At each stop along this tour in biophysics, the engineer in me will emerge and wonder whether we could apply this science to make something useful. I shall narrate, in brief, recent efforts in my group to explore the possibility of electronic devices inspired by these quantum biological systems.
Swaroop Ganguly got his BTech from IIT Kharagpur, and MS-PhD from UT Austin with Prof Sanjay Banerjee. Thereafter, he held R&D positions in UT Austin and at Freescale Semiconductor and Tokyo Electron before joining IIT Bombay in 2009. While here, he won the IBM-IUSSTF Fellowship in Nanotechnology for 2010, and an IIT Bombay Research Paper Award for 2015 with Prof. Anil KG. His research interests revolve around the physics of nanoelectronic devices. He likes to teach physics to electrical engineering students. He spends too much time on issues pertaining to the IITB Nanofabrication Facility, and too little time on reading, traveling, sports and movies.