Q:

What is the purpose of photosynthesis?

A:

Quick Answer

Photosynthesis is a process that allows plants to harvest energy in sunlight and store it chemically, by producing sugars. Sugars hold energy in their molecular bonds; when the plant breaks down these bonds, energy is released that the organism can then use. Although green plants are the most famous photosynthesizing organisms, some bacteria, algae and protists carry out the process as well.

Know More
What is the purpose of photosynthesis?
Credit: Zbysek.nemec CC-BY-SA 3.0

Full Answer

In plants, photosynthesis takes place in small organelles found in some of the plant’s cells, called chloroplasts. Chloroplasts are most numerous in the cells that make up the plant’s leaves, although the stems and sepals may also contain small numbers of the organelles. Chloroplasts combine carbon dioxide and water with sunlight to produce the storage sugars. In the process, the plants produce oxygen and release a small amount of the water they absorbed.

Photosynthesis enables most aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems to persist. All of the planet’s ecosystems require an influx of energy. While a few species of bacteria may harvest the energy of chemical bonds and some deep-sea organisms obtain energy from thermal gradients found around geothermal vents, green plants capture sunlight and use it as an energy source. Through the synthesis of sugars, plants become food for the animals. Accordingly, scientists often refer to plants as producers, while animals are consumers.

Learn More

Related Questions

  • Q:

    What is the biological importance of lipids?

    A:

    Lipids are a wide category of compounds that are known as biomolecules. Lipids include neutral fats, steroids, oils and waxes. They are created by the body naturally to be used in a variety of biological membranes and reactions.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What is physical digestion and chemical digestion?

    A:

    Physical digestion is the physical process of breaking down food into smaller pieces that can easily be accessed by digestive enzymes, without making any chemical changes, whereas chemical digestion refers to the process through which the mammalian body further breaks down food substances into small, soluble chemicals that can be absorbed into the blood. The chewing of food and movement in the stomach contribute to physical digestion while natural catalysts aid chemical digestion.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What are multicelled organisms?

    A:

    A multicelled, or multicellular, organism is any living being comprised of more than one cell. Typically, multicellular life differentiates cells into specialized tasks, which in larger organisms can form tissues and organs. This allows multicellular organisms to have cells that are more efficient at a specific function of life.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    Which ligament or tendon attaches the hamstring to the back of the knee?

    A:

    The hamstring tendon attaches the hamstring muscle to an area just below the knee joint known as the tibia. It assists with hamstring muscle and aids in bending the knee. The hamstring muscle is located at the back of the thigh and stretches from the pelvis to the knee joint.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:

Explore