Using light to produce

Solar energy is converted into chemical energy

Photosynthesis is the process whereby plants using light energy from the sun convert carbon dioxide and water to glucose sugar and oxygen gas through a series of reactions. The overall equation for photosynthesis is

carbon dioxide + water =light energy=> glucose + oxygen

6CO2 + 6H2O =light energy=> C6H12O6 + 6O2

Light energy from the sun is converted into chemical energy by the production of glucose molecules.

Photosynthesis is carried out in the chloroplasts of plant cells using the green pigment chlorophyll.  Glucose is produced which is converted into starch. Starch is a polymer made up of repeating glucose units.

The following animation shows the overall process of photosynthesis in the life of a plant. Click on the white arrow to continue.


Photosynthesis explained - Lower level


Photosynthesis explained - Higher level


Photosynthesis song


Photosynthesis Song - They Might Be Giants