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Chapter 10 Key Terms

Chapter 10: Photosynthesis

TermDefinition
Action Spectrum A graph that profiles the relative effectiveness of different wavelengths of radiation in driving a particular process.
Bundle-sheath Cell A graph that profiles the relative effectiveness of different wavelengths of radiation in driving a particular process.
C3 plant A plant that uses the Calvin cycle for the initial steps that incorporate CO2 into organic material, forming a three-carbon compound as the first stable intermediate.
C4 plant A plant in which the Calvin cycle is preceded by reactions that incorporate CO2 into a four-carbon compound, the end product of which supplies CO2 for the Calvin cycle.
Calvin cycle The second of two major stages in photosynthesis (following the light reactions), involving fixation of atmospheric CO2 and reduction of the fixed carbon into carbohydrate.
CAM Plant A plant that uses crassulacean acid metabolism, an adaptation for photosynthesis in arid conditions. Carbon dioxide enters open stomata during the night and converts to organic acids, which release CO2 during the day, when stomata are closed.
Carbon Fixation The initial incorporation of carbon from CO2 into an organic compound by an autotrophic organism (a plant, another photosynthetic organism, or a chemoautotrophic prokaryote).
Carotenoid An accessory pigment, either yellow or orange, in the chloroplasts of plants and in some prokaryotes. By absorbing wavelengths of light that chlorophyll cannot, carotenoids broaden the spectrum of colors that can drive photosynthesis.
Chlorophyll A green pigment located in membranes within the chloroplasts of plants and algae and in the membranes of certain prokaryotes. Chlorophyll a participates directly in the light reactions, which convert solar energy to chemical energy.
Chlorophyll a A photosynthetic pigment that participates directly in the light reactions, which convert solar energy to chemical energy.
Chlorophyll b An accessory photosynthetic pigment that transfers energy to chlorophyll a.
Crassulacean Acid Metabolism (CAM) Adapted photosynthesis in arid conditions, In this process, a plant takes up CO2 and incorporates it into a variety of organic acids at night; during the day, CO2 is released from organic acids for use in the Calvin cycle.
Cyclic Electron Flow A route of electron flow during the light reactions of photosynthesis that involves only photosystem I and that produces ATP but not NADPH or O2.
Electromagnetic Spectrum The entire spectrum of electromagnetic radiation, ranging in wavelength from less than a nanometer to more than a kilometer.
Glyceraldehyde 3-phosphate (G3P) A three-carbon carbohydrate that is the direct product of the Calvin cycle; it is also an intermediate in glycolysis.
Heterotroph An organism that obtains organic food molecules by eating other organisms or substances derived from them.
Light-harvesting Complex A complex of proteins associated with pigment molecules (including chlorophyll a, chlorophyll b, and carotenoids) that captures light energy and transfers it to reaction-center pigments in a photosystem.
Light Reactions The first stage in photosynthesis. These reactions, which occur on the thylakoid membranes of the chloroplast or on membranes of certain prokaryotes, convert solar energy to the chemical energy of ATP and NADPH, releasing oxygen in the process.
Linear Electron Flow A route of electron flow during the light reactions of photosynthesis that involves both photosystems (I and II) and produces ATP, NADPH, and O2. The net electron flow is from H2O to NADP+.
Mesophyll Leaf cells specialized for photosynthesis. In C3 and CAM plants, mesophyll cells are located between the upper and lower epidermis; in C4 plants, they are located between the bundle-sheath cells and the epidermis.
NADP+ Nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate, an electron acceptor that, as NADPH, temporarily stores energized electrons produced during the light reactions.
PEP carboxylase An enzyme that adds CO2 to phosphoenolpyruvate (PEP) to form oxaloacetate in mesophyll cells of C4 plants. It acts prior to photosynthesis.
Photon A quantum, or discrete quantity, of light energy that behaves as if it were a particle.
Photophosphorylation The process of generating ATP from ADP and phosphate by means of chemiosmosis, using a proton-motive force generated across the thylakoid membrane of the chloroplast or the membrane of certain prokaryotes during the light reactions of photosynthesis.
Photorespiration It uses oxygen and ATP, releases carbon dioxide, and decreases photosynthetic output. It generally occurs on hot, dry, bright days, when stomata close and the O2/CO2 ratio in the leaf increases, favoring the binding of O2 rather than CO2 by rubisco.
Photosynthesis The conversion of light energy to chemical energy that is stored in sugars or other organic compounds; occurs in plants, algae, and certain prokaryotes.
Photosystem A light-capturing unit located in the thylakoid membrane of the chloroplast or in the membrane of prokaryotes, consisting of a reaction-center complex in light-harvesting complexes. There are two types that absorb light at different wavelengths.
Photosystem I (PS I) A light-capturing unit in a chloroplast's thylakoid membrane or in the membrane of some prokaryotes; it has two molecules of P700 chlorophyll a at its reaction center.
Photosystem II (PS II) One of two light-capturing units in a chloroplast's thylakoid membrane or in the membrane of some prokaryotes; it has two molecules of P680 chlorophyll a at its reaction center.
Primary Electron Acceptor In the thylakoid membrane of a chloroplast or in the membrane of some prokaryotes, a specialized molecule that shares the reaction-center complex with a pair of chlorophyll a molecules and that accepts an electron from them.
Reaction-Center Complex A complex of proteins and a pair of chlorophyll a molecules and a PEA. Located in a photosystem, this complex triggers the light reactions of photosynthesis. The pair of chlorophylls donate an electron to the PEA, which passes an electron to an ETC.
Rubisco Ribulose bisphosphate (RuBP) carboxylase, the enzyme that catalyzes the first step of the Calvin cycle (the addition of CO2 to RuBP).
Stoma A microscopic pore surrounded by guard cells in the epidermis of leaves and stems that allows gas exchange between the environment and the interior of the plant.
Thylakoid A flattened, membranous sac inside a chloroplast. They often exist in stacks called grana that are interconnected; their membranes contain molecular “machinery” used to convert light energy to chemical energy.
Visible Light That portion of the electromagnetic spectrum that can be detected as various colors by the human eye, ranging in wavelength from about 380 nm to about 750 nm.
Wavelength The distance between crests of waves, such as those of the electromagnetic spectrum.
Created by: taylor.wendell