Green plants and certain living organisms utilize light energy for converting water and carbon dioxide into simple sugars. This process is called photosynthesis. It helps plants in manufacturing their own food which is important for their growth. Oxygen which is released as the by-product is used by several organisms for respiration. Photosynthesis takes place in chloroplast cells in the green plants. Chlorophyll (green pigment) which absorbs light energy from the sun is present in chloroplasts.
Photosynthesis has two significant stages. The initial stage is known as the light stage, it is highly dependent on light energy. In this stage, water molecules are split into oxygen and hydrogen ions. Oxygen is released as a by-product. The hydrogen ions get carried to the next stage of photosynthesis.
The second stage is light independent reaction and is known as the dark stage. Carbon dioxide gets transformed into simple sugars known as Adenosine Triphosphate (ATP) in the dark stage. This process is known as carbon fixation. Carbon fixation is associated with an endothermic chemical reaction. Photosynthesis requires energy.
Significance of Photosynthesis
Photosynthesis occurs in green plants, algae, seaweeds and certain bacteria which contain green pigment. These living organisms act as authentic factories for sugar. They manufacture millions of sugar molecules every second. The glucose molecules serve as a source of energy for the plant growth and help in reproduction. Plants convert glucose into cellulose, it is used as a cell wall in plant cells. Excess glucose is stored by plants in the form of carbohydrates. Starch gets stored in stems, leaves and roots.
Animals cannot manufacture their own food. They ultimately depend on photosynthesis by plants for acquiring glucose needed for their growth. Animals mostly rely on starch and carbohydrates stored in plant roots, leaves and stems for their sustenance. To add on to it, oxygen used by animals during respiration is a by-product of photosynthesis!
Ancient photosynthesis products including fossil fuels are used as a source of energy in the present-day world. Fossil fuels such as coal, petroleum and natural gasses are the remains of ancient organisms which relied on photosynthesis several years ago. Photosynthesis is one of the most significant biochemical processes. Almost all the living organisms on the planet, indirectly or directly depend on photosynthesis as an energy, oxygen and food source.
Factors Influencing Photosynthesis
Photosynthesis process relies on several factors including:
- Higher the intensity of light, higher the rate of photosynthesis. Meanwhile, low intensity of light results in lower rate of photosynthesis.
- Higher concentration of carbon dioxide boosts the rate of photosynthesis. Normally, carbon dioxide in the range of 300-400 PPM is adequate for photosynthesis.
- Temperature is vital for efficient execution of photosynthesis. It is necessary to have a temperature range between 25o to 300 C.
- In photosynthesis, deficiency of water can affect the carbon dioxide intake. In case of scarcity of water, the stomatal opening will refuse to retain the amount of water they have stored inside.
- At times, industrial pollutants and other particles tend to settle on the leaf surface. This potentially blocks the stomatal pores making carbon dioxide intake difficult
6CO2 + 6H2O —> C6H12O6 + 6O2
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Answer) Green plants and certain living organisms utilize light energy for converting water and carbon dioxide into simple sugars. This process is called photosynthesis.
Answer) Light stage and Dark stage.
Answer) Adenosine Triphosphate.