Q:

What contains chlorophyll?

A:

Quick Answer

Chlorophyll is found in cyanobacteria and the chloroplasts of some plant and algae cells. Chlorophyll is a pigment that absorbs visible light, allowing the organism to carry out the process of photosynthesis. Chlorophyll primarily absorbs the blue and red light from each end of the visible spectrum causing it to reflect green light and giving it a bright green color.

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Full Answer

By absorbing the light from the sun, chlorophyll enables the plants to engage in photosynthesis. When plants engage in photosynthesis, they manufacture their own food. Such organisms combine sunlight with carbon dioxide and water to create sugars and oxygen. These sugars serve as chemical storage sites for energy. When the plant needs energy in the future, it breaks the chemical bonds of the sugar to release the energy. This process takes place primarily in the chloroplasts of plants, which are small organelles found in some of the plant’s cells.

Photosynthesis uses other pigments in addition to chlorophyll. Carotenoids are another type of pigment that gives plants an orange color. Although carotenoids cannot carry out photosynthesis by themselves, they pass along the energy they capture to chlorophyll. Phycobilins are another pigment like chlorophyll, and they reside in the cells of cyanobacteria and rhodophyta.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    Why do onion cells lack a chloroplast?

    A:

    Plant cells from an onion bulb lack chloroplasts because this part of the plant grows below ground, making it incapable of absorbing the light needed to photosynthesize. Most subterranean root and bulb structures in plants do not have chloroplasts for this reason.

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  • Q:

    How are green algae different from cyanobacteria?

    A:

    Although they are sometimes called "blue-green algae," cyanobacteria are not plants and are prokaryotes, while green algae are plants and are eukaryotes. Both types of organisms obtain their energy from photosynthesis, but cyanobacteria do not have a membrane-surrounded nucleus, the lack of which is a structural characteristic of prokaryotes. Unlike green algae, cyanobacteria do not contain chloroplasts.

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  • Q:

    How do plants absorb light energy from the sun?

    A:

    Plant leaves contain chloroplasts, which have chlorophyll that absorbs light energy from the sun. Chlorophyll is the green pigment that is important for the process of photosynthesis in plants.

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  • Q:

    What is the difference between bacteria and cyanobacteria?

    A:

    Cyanobacteria, also known as blue-green algae, differ most prominently from other bacteria in that cyanobacteria possess chlorophyll A, while most bacteria do not contain chlorophyll. This gives them their characteristic blue-green color and causes them to give off oxygen during photosynthesis.

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