Gerald Langer is travelling to the University of North Carolina in Wilmington to study coccolithophore biology in the lab of former MBA Fellow, Prof Alison Taylor. The visit is funded by a joint NERC-NSF funded proposal held by our two laboratories that aims to understand why certain coccolithophores use silicon to produce their calcium carbonate plates. Silicon is more usually associated with the production of diatom frustules and so the requirement for silicon in coccolithophores is puzzling. Gerald will be using the excellent electron microscopy facilities available at UNCW to study this process.