The effect of light intensity on the rate of photosynthesis

Essay by Explosion March 2004

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How light intensity effects the

Rate of photo synthesis.


The aim of my experiment is to find out how light intensity affects the rate of photosynthesis.


I predict that as the light intensity increases that the rate of photosynthesis will increase in proportion, so for example if you increase the light intensity from 10cm away to 20 cm away form a stationary plant. There for the rate of photosynthesis will decrease proportionally with the distance of the light from the plant (in this case a half). This means that as the light moves away then there is less light given to the reaction for photosynthesis to happen.

My theory behind this is the following;

Photosynthesis is the process that plants use to create energy for themselves.

It is best described from the following equation

Water + carbon dioxide sunlight glucose + oxygen



6H O +6CO C H O +6O (The balanced equation)

glucose is the resulting energy that is needed by the plant to grow and survive.

Oxygen is the waste product that is given out via the stomata pores when they become turgid, this is during the process of respiration.

Water is taken in via the root hairs which stick out in to the soil, these are located on the roots themselves, because of these root hairs this gives the plant a bigger surface area in which it can absorb more water. Water is essential for the process of photosynthesis and also to stop the plant from wilting, because plant cells take up water via osmosis which makes them tight or turgid and so the plant stays upright, but if there is no water in the cell then the cell becomes flaccid and loose causing the plant to wilt and die. this is the same...