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Chapter 1

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Wilfrid Laurier University
David Smith

th October 10 2012 Chapter 1: Life and Light Green alga - Uses light for both energy & info - Eyespot: light sensor (determines whether to move toward or away from light, chloroplasts harvest light and use it as energy ex: photosynthesis) - One type is called Chlamydomanas Reinhardtii The Sun – Reason why there’s life on Earth. Sun produces electromagnetic radiation which gets absorbed by pigments in molecules in organisms. Length of wave determines kind of electromagnetic radiation 400 to 700nm is visible light. Short = high energy, long = low LIGHT: ER that humans can detect with their eyes A Photon is a wave of discrete particles Wavelength – distance between two peaks Light energy must be absorbed by molecules called pigments. NOT reflected or transmitted. Pigments absorb light energy The light reflects, absorbs or transmits depending on the pigment. PIGMENT: a conjugated system with alternating single and double bonds which enables electrons to become delocalized and therefore can interact more freely with photons. Different pigments transmit different waves of life An electron is promoted to a higher/lower energy state when photos are absorbed The difference between the ground state and higher energy state equals the amount of energy the photon supplies that ends up being absorbed The colour seen is either transmitted or absorbed therefore the photon does not supply that amount of energy that is being absorbed. The smaller the wavelength the more energy therefore the energy state will be farther away. Halobacterium captures light with the protein retinol which is embedded in the transmembrane helixes in the seven cylinders inside plasma. It changes shape if transport protons from
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