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The Discovery of Photosynthesis

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Apart from the food they manufacture, plants also need carbon, hydrogen and oxygen to survive. Water absorbed from the soil provides the hydrogen and oxygen. During photosynthesis, carbon and water are used to synthesize food. They also need nitrate to make amino acids (Amino acid an ingredient for making protein). In addition to that, they need magnesium to make chlorophyll.

In this lesson, we shall learn more about how plants manufacture food (photosynthesis), and learn more about the conditions that must be present for this to happen.

Photosynthesis provides the oxygen for life and for the process of cellular respiration.


Thus the reactions of the light-dependent stage of photosynthesis
provide a source of reducing power (NADPH) and the universal
energy-supplying molecule ATP, with oxygen gas given off as a waste
product.

Photosynthesis Quiz - Science Geek

The process responsible for producing most of the Earth’s oxygen is known as photosynthesis

The Oxytherm oxygen electrode control unit is designed to provide PC control of oxygen uptake or evolution measurements across a broad range of applications from studies of mitochondrial and cellular respiration to measurements of isolated chloroplast suspensions in photosynthesis research.

Photosynthesis — both anoxygenic and oxygenic — allows access to new sources of energy. Oxygenic photosynthesis has the potential to create an oxygen-rich atmosphere and so allow aerobic respiration, which yields much higher amounts of energy than anaerobic respiration. The amount of oxygen added to the atmosphere is intimately linked to the burial of organic matter in sediments, therefore marine phytoplankton are crucially important in maintaining the levels of atmospheric oxygen on Earth. Anoxygenic photosynthesis will have a positive Gaian effect by providing an important source of energy. Oxygenic photosynthesis is more problematical; as with anoxygenic photosynthesis it provides an energy source, but the oxygen given off is likely to be toxic to organisms evolved in anoxic conditions. It is currently impossible to know if we should expect most biospheres to evolve oxygenic photosynthesis. However, improvements in telescope technology should allow us to look for oxygen-rich atmospheres around distant Earth-like planets.

ATP and Energy Storage - Biology in Motion

leaf and watching them float to show oxygen production during photosynthesis.

Photosynthesis is a chemical process through which plants, some bacteria and algae, produce glucose and oxygen from carbon dioxide and water, using only light as a source of energy.

This process is extremely important for life on earth as it provides the oxygen that all other life depends on.


Just like humans and other living things, plants also need this food for many things. Let's see a few:

Glucose resulting from photosynthesis is used during respiration to release energy that the plant needs for other life processes.

The plant cells also convert some of the glucose into starch for storage. This can then be used when the plant needs them. This is why dead plants are used as biomass, because they have stored chemical energy in them)

Glucose is also needed to make other chemicals such as proteins, fats and plant sugars that are all needed for the plant to carry out essential growth and other life processes.

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