More about Photosynthesis: Difference Between Chlorophyll A and B

Category: Cell Biology

Author: Lakna - a graduate in Molecular Biology & Biochemistry, is a Molecular Biologist and has a broad and keen interest in the discovery of nature related things.

Chlorophyll A (Chemical formula: C55H72MgN4O5) Chlorophyll B (Chemical formula: C55H70MgN4 O6)
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Chlorophyll A is the principal pigment involved in the photosynthesis. Chlorophyll B is the accessory pigment, collecting the energy in order to pass into chlorophyll A
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Three-fourths (¾) of total chlorophyll in plants are Chlorophyll A. One-fourth (¼) of total chlorophyll in plants are Chlorophyll B.
Chlorophyll A absorbs the light in the range of 430 nm to 660 nm (violet-blue and orange-red light from the spectrum). The wavelengths which are effectively absorbed by chlorophyll A are 430 nm and 662 nm. Chlorophyll A reflects blue-green in color. Chlorophyll B absorbs the light in the range of 450 nm to 650 nm (orange-red light from the spectrum). The wavelength which is effectively absorbed by chlorophyll B is 470 nm. Chlorophyll B reflects yellow-green in color.
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The solubility of chlorophyll A is low in polar solvents. Chlorophyll A is soluble in petroleum ether. The solubility of chlorophyll B is high in polar solvents like ethanol and methanol compared to chlorophyll A.
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Chlorophyll A is present in all the photosynthetic organisms on earth, giving a bluish green color to those organisms. Chlorophyll B gives a yellowish green color to organisms.

Supplementary information:
Visible Color Spectrum Wheel (

The visible color spectrum wheel is an arrangement of colors in a wheel or circle to show how one color relates to the other.
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Here is a color wheel from Wikimedia Commons:
Color wheel wavelengths

UV 270nm to 280nm
Violet 400nm
Blue 475nm
Green 510nm
Yellow 570nm
Orange 590nm
Red 650nm

Arrangement of Colors
The wavelength of visible light is between 390 to 750 nm, which is visible to the naked eye in the form of light. In a standard color wheel, all the visible colors are painted on a circle. The three primaries (red, yellow, and blue) are placed around the three points of an equilateral triangle; they are also known as pure colors, as they cannot be made by mixing any other colors.

The secondaries (green, orange, and violet) are then placed in between the primaries at equal distances. They are made by mixing two primary colors in equal proportions. Orange is made by mixing red with yellow; violet is made by mixing red with blue; and green is made by mixing blue with yellow. The six tertiary colors, which are red-orange, red-violet, yellow-green, yellow-orange, blue-green, and blue-violet, are made by mixing each primary color with the adjacent secondary one.

For example, red-orange is made by mixing red (primary) with orange (secondary). Red orange is then placed in between red and orange in the wheel. All the other five tertiary types are placed in it in the same way, i.e., in between the primaries and the secondaries from which they are made.

These 12 colors form the basis of this wheel. However, in reality, there are many more varieties, shades, and hues. Many such wheels show more gradation of colors and have 24 colors on them. In theory, all of them can be made by mixing the primary, with the secondary and tertiary ones; and the total number will be infinite. But in reality, it is very difficult for paint companies to come up with so many variations.

One of the most interesting facts about this wheel is that if it is spinning rapidly, our eyes can see the color white, which is not even there in it. When it spins rapidly, the colors merge into each other very fast, and our mind is not able to distinguish between them. So, their reflection is blended, and we see white light. When all the light of the visible spectrum is absorbed, we see the color black. The color wheel is thus, invaluable for artists as well as physicists, who study the interaction of colors.

Posted on אוקטובר 01, 2021 12:13 אחה"צ by lunababy22 lunababy22


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