Chlorophyll is a compound known as a chelate. Chelates consist of central metal ions bonded to big organic molecules that are composed of hydrogen, carbon, or other elements. Chlorophyll can occur in a variety of forms and is the pigment that gives plants their green color. Chlorophyll is able to absorb certain light waves but cannot absorb green, resulting in a plant's color. Chlorophyll is also vital for photosynthesis and can be found in plants' chloroplasts. There are different types of chlorophyll structures but plants only contain chlorophyll a and b, which only differ slightly from each other.
Role of Chlorophyll in Plants
In addition to giving plants their green color, chlorophyll is vital for photosynthesis as it helps to channel the energy of sunlight into chemical energy. With photosynthesis, chlorophyll absorbs energy and then transforms water and carbon dioxide into oxygen and carbohydrates. The process of photosynthesis converts solar energy into a usable form for plants, and the animals that eat them, forming the foundation of some food chains.
What is Photosynthesis?
Photosynthesis is a reaction that occurs between water and carbon dioxide, that is catalyzed by sunlight to produce glucose and oxygen. During photosynthesis, electrons are transferred from water to carbon dioxide in what is known as a reduction process. Chlorophyll aids in this process by trapping solar energy, allowing easier transfer of electrons to carbon dioxide molecules.
More Information About The Role of Chlorophyll in Plants
- Why Do Some Plants Appear Green? - An overview of the role of chlorophyll in giving plants their color, as well as information on the other important roles of chlorophyll in plants.
- What is Chlorophyll? - A page that explains the role of chlorophyll in photosynthesis and as a photo-receptor.
- Chlorophyll and Chloroplasts - An article that explains how chlorophyll and chloroplasts work in plants and their importance.
- Photosynthetic Pigments - Information on the different photosynthetic pigments including chlorophylls, carotenoids, and phycobilins.
- Why is The Chlorophyll in Plants Green? - An explanation of how chlorophyll works to give plants their green, red, orange, or brown color.
- The Biology of Plants: Making Food - Information on the process of photosynthesis and the role that chlorophyll plays in plants making food.
- Chlorophyll: Why Plants Always Wear Green - An explanation of how chlorophyll gives plants their color from a horticulture specialist.
- Pigments for Photosynthesis - An overview of the different pigments needed for photosynthesis including chlorophyll, carotenoids, and lycopene.
- Variations in Green - An interesting article that explores why different plants are different shades of green.
- Introduction to Photosynthesis - An easy to understand overview of the process of photosynthesis, also includes information on pigments, and light reactions.
- What is Photosynthesis? - An in-depth explanation of the process of photosynthesis and the role of different parts of a plant.
- Molecular Expressions Cell Biology: Chloroplasts - Information on chloroplasts and their importance in photosynthesis; includes a labeled diagram showing chloroplast structure in plant cells.
- Plant Cell Anatomy - A diagram showing the anatomy of plant cells as well as explanations of each of the plant cell parts.
- The Plant Cell - Information on the different components that make up a plant cell and their role in keeping plants alive.
Written By Ava Rose.