Photosynthesis researches began approximately 300 years ago. Belgian physician and alchemist Jan Baptista van Helmont conducted numerous experiments related with photosynthesis. Subsequently, other experiments found that air plants absorb carbon dioxide through their leaves. All these experiments were initial efforts that paved the way for further discovery of the phenomenon of photosynthesis. They revealed that through the photosynthesis process, green plants are able to produce the food with which the chain starts to nourish all living things.
Photosynthesis is the process through which plant cells convert solar energy and chemical energy into oxygen and glucose. Oxygen is one of the most important elements for life. Glucose is stored in the form of starch and utilized as food by the organisms.
The part of the plant where photosynthesis takes place with higher intensity is the leaf. The leaf is covered by an epidermis which provides protection. There are cells on the rear face of the leaf, or underside, called stomata, which receives carbondiocsit, chemical energy and solar energy into leaf.
There are cells below the epidermis called palisade parenchyma which contain lots of chloroplasts. Chloroplasts are containing chlorophyll packages. The central rib is formed by timber vessels. The timber vessels conduct water and minerals, and transport sugar a product of photosynthesis, which should reach all parts of the plant.
following factors are essential to perform photosynthesis:
Sunlight: The plants need light to perform photosynthesis coming from the Sun
Chlorophyll: Chlorophyll is the green pigment that is found in the chloroplasts of leaves parenchyma. Chlorophyll is essential for the absorption of light rays and the transformation of energy. A plant without chlorophyll is unable to produce food substances and need to live as a parasite or saprophyte.
Minerals and water: Mineral salts and water is obtained through the root hairs of the plant. These minerals are used, for the formation of chlorophyll and as raw material for the formation of sugars, which are the basic products of photosynthesis. Mineral salts and water is obtained through the root hairs of the plant. These minerals are used, for the formation of chlorophyll and as raw material for the formation of sugars, which are the basic products of photosynthesis
Carbon dioxide: Carbon dioxide is obtained by the plant from air by the process of diffusion through the cell membranes of the leaf. This gas is directly involved in the formation of glucose.
Energy: Plants need energy to carry out the reactions of photosynthesis. Energy is carried by molecules called energy acceptors.
Enzymes: Enzymes are organic substances that accelerate chemical reactions of photosynthesis.
Photosynthesis reactions are divided into two phases:
Dark phase (chemical)
The light phase process involves water molecules due to light and chlorophyll, to form oxygen and hydrogen. Oxygen thus formed emerges and is released by the plant. Hydrogen reactions intervene in the next phase.
The dark phase or chemical light need not be performed directly. In it, the carbon dioxide from the air reacts with other chemicals present in chloroplasts, such as ribulose, to form glucose. All this is done with the help of enzymes in a complex series of reactions.
Photosynthesis is not always carried out with the same intensity, there are certain factors that can override or accelerate. Factors influencing the photosynthetic function of the plants are:
- Luminous Intensity
- Carbon dioxide concentration in the atmosphere
Enzymes involved in photosynthesis are thermo labile (stops functioning at high temperatures), so that if the temperatures are above 40 ° C photosynthesis vanishes.
Carbon dioxide is the raw material for the formation of glucose, therefore, there must be at appropriate concentrations in the atmosphere.
Substances manufactured by Green vegetables are partly consumed by them to perform their vital functions, but remaining parts are stored in different parts of the plant and used for other living beings feed on them.
In addition, during photosynthesis oxygen is released into the atmosphere, an element that is essential for respiration.