Photosynthesis literally means 'synthesis with the help of light'. It is the process that gives life to all living beings. The plants convert light energy into life energy. It is the only biological process that makes use of sun's light energy for driving the life machinery. Hence, photosynthesis is regarded as 'leader' of all processes both biological and abiological. It is the most fundamental of all biochemical reactions by which plants synthesize organic compounds in the chloroplast from carbondioxide and water with the help of sunlight. It is an oxidation-reduction reaction between water and carbondioxide
1. Photosynthesis is a source of all our food and fuel. It is the only biological process that acts as the driving vital force for the whole animal kingdom and for the non-photosynthetic organism.
2. It drives all other processes of biological and abiological world. It is responsible for the growth and sustenance of our biosphere.
3. It provides organic substances, which are used in the production of fats, proteins, nucleoproteins, pigments, enzymes, vitamins, cellulose, organic acids, etc. Some of them become structural parts of the organisms.
4. It makes use of simple raw materials such as CO2, H2O and inexhaustible light energy for the synthesis of energetic organic compounds.
5. It is significant because it provides energy in terms of fossil fuels like coal and petrol obtained from plants, which lived millions and millions of years ago.
6. Plants, from great trees to microscopic algae, are engaged in converting light energy into chemical energy, while man with all his knowledge in chemistry and physics cannot imitate them.