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Investigating the Requirements for Photosynthesis

Chlorophyll
Aim: To demonstrate the need of chlorophyll in photosynthesis.
Hypothesis: When iodine is added onto the leaf, it will turn bluish black.
Materials:
Leaf
Beaker
Tripod
Wire gauze
Bunsen burner
Test-tube
Matches
Water
Methylated spirits
Risk Assessment:
Risk
Methylated spirits
are flammable
Boiling water can
burn your skin and
spills are highly
likely
Iodine can stain your
skin

Level
High
High

Moderat
e

Control Measures
Closed footwear, gloves and safety
glasses must always be worn.
Ensure footwear is enclosed and
carefully wipe off any spills with
paper towels.
Wear gloves at all times and handle
with care

Variables:

Independent: Amount of chlorophyll


Dependent: Amount of starch
Controlled: Leaf

Method:
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.

Collect sample of variegated leaves


Set up the water bath
Heat the water for five minutes
Fill the test-tube with methylated spirits
Draw the leaf before putting it in the test-tube
Put the leaf in the test-tube and then place the test-tube in the
beaker
7. Remove the leaf after it turns pale
8. Put iodine on the leaf
9. Observe and record results

Results:

TEST

BEFORE

AFTER

COLOUR
STARCH

Green
Yes

Bluish black
Yes

As iodine was added to the leaf it turned bluish black which confirms the
presence of starch in the leaf.

Conclusion: The hypothesis was proven right that when iodine is added
onto the leaf, it will turn bluish black. The experiment shows that plant
leaves produce starch and that chlorophyll is necessary for photosynthesis
to occur.
Discussion: Photosynthesis is a process by which plants use sunlight and
chlorophyll to combine water and carbon dioxide to produce glucose and
oxygen. The glucose is mainly stored in the form of starch. This
experiment was conducted to demonstrate the need of chlorophyll for
photosynthesis. The results obtained show that the leaf contained starch
as it turned bluish black at the edges when iodine was added. It remained

white in the middle as there was no chlorophyll present there from the
beginning. The edges were green which meant that there was chlorophyll
there and this was proven right because of the iodine test and thus
validating the experiment. Also correct procedure was followed and the
variables were controlled such as the leaf used. This experiment was
accurate as the correct use of equipment was ensured. The experiment
was reliable as the results were compared with other groups and they
obtained the same results. Also the experiment has been repeated more
than once as three samples were tested at the same time. This
experiment could have been improved by using different types of leaves
from different plants to make sure that it doesnt just test right on that
particular plants leaves.

Light
Aim: To demonstrate the need of sunlight for photosynthesis.
Hypothesis: The plants require sunlight in order for photosynthesis to
occur.
Materials:

Leaf
Beaker
Tripod
Wire gauze
Bunsen burner
Test-tube
Matches
Water
Methylated spirits

Risk Assessment:
Risk
Methylated spirits
are flammable
Boiling water can
burn your skin and
spills are highly
likely
Iodine can stain your
skin

Level
High
High

Moderat
e

Control Measures
Closed footwear, gloves and safety
glasses must always be worn.
Ensure footwear is enclosed and
carefully wipe off any spills with
paper towels.
Wear gloves at all times and handle
with care

Variables:

Independent: Availability of light


Dependent: Amount of starch

Controlled: Amount of methylated spirits

Method:
1. Collect a sample of leaves (the ones that have been exposed to
sunlight)
2. Cover the leaves with aluminium foil
3. Collect the leaves after one day
4. Remove aluminium foil
5. Set up the water bath
6. Heat the water for about 5 minutes
7. Fill the test-tube with methylated spirits
8. Draw the leaf before putting it in the test-tube
9. Put the leaf in the test-tube and then place the test-tube in the
beaker
10.
Remove the leaf after it turns pale
11.
Put iodine on the leaf
12.
Observe and record results

Results:

TEST

BEFORE

AFTER

COLOUR
STARCH

Green
Yes

Pale green
No

Conclusion: The hypothesis was proven right that the leaves require
sunlight in order to carry out photosynthesis. The experiments shows that
the plants will consume all of its starch if there is no sunlight present to

produce more. Thus proving that sunlight is necessary for photosynthesis


to occur.
Discussion: Photosynthesis is a process by which plants use sunlight and
chlorophyll to combine water and carbon dioxide to produce glucose and
oxygen. The glucose is mainly stored in the form of starch. This
experiment was conducted to demonstrate the need of sunlight for
photosynthesis. The results obtained show that the leaf did not contain
starch as it there was no effect seen when iodine was added. This was
because the leaf consumed all of its stored starch since it could not
produce more due to the lack of sunlight. This experiment was valid as the
correct procedure was followed and also the variables were controlled
such as the amount of methylated spirits. This experiment was accurate
as the correct use of equipment was ensured. The experiment has been
repeated more than once as three samples were tested at the same time.
However, the experiment was not reliable because when the results were
compared with other groups and they did not obtain the same results. This
experiment could have been improved by repeating the experiment even
more times until the desired results were obtained. Also a separate water
bath should have been used for the chlorophyll experiment rather than
doing all of them in one and overcrowding everything.