|Which is the color of light not reflected by chlorophyll?
|Question Date: 2009-12-31|
Chlorophyll absorbs light most strongly in the blue and red but poorly in the green portions of the electromagnetic spectrum; hence the green color of chlorophyll-containing tissues such as plant leaves. The green portion of the solar spectrum is reflected not absorbed. Blue and red at opposite ends of spectrum are absorbed by Chlorophyll. The molecule has reaction going on that accept blue and red light preferentially and hence the green part of spectrum is reflected.
There is actually more than one type of chlorophyll, and they reflect and absorb different colors (one is blue-green, one just green, and one yellow-green). Land plants make heavy use of blue and red light, and algae that live in the ocean use more blue.
The main color reflected by chlorophyll is green (thus the color we actually see). In the fall, when leaves change color then we start to see some of the other colors reflected albeit in much lesser intensities (yellow, brown, red). Chlorophyll actually absorbs all wavelengths of color (including a small amount of green) and contains compounds that use those wavelengths for chemical reactions such a beta carotene using the orange wavelength.
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