What Is Reduced & Oxidized in Photosynthesis?

What Is Reduced & Oxidized in Photosynthesis
••• GYRO PHOTOGRAPHY/amanaimagesRF/amana images/Getty Images

Photosynthesis is the process used by plants and a few microorganisms to transform sunlight, carbon dioxide and water into two products; carbohydrates that they use to store energy, and oxygen that they release into the environment. Water is oxidized in photosynthesis, which means it loses electrons, and carbon dioxide is reduced, meaning it gains electrons.

Reductive Gain

It seems counterintuitive that carbon dioxide, the compound that's reduced in photosynthesis, gains electrons. This electron transfer is called reduction because the addition of negatively charged electrons reduces the overall charge of the molecule; that is, it makes the molecule less positive and more negative.

The Formula

The oxidation-reduction action of photosynthesis transforms batches of six water molecules, H2O, and six carbon dioxide molecules, CO2, into one glucose molecule, C6H1206, and six molecules of O2, which is breathable oxygen.

Related Articles

How Are Oxidation-Reduction Reactions Used in Everyday...
Organelles Involved in Photosynthesis
What Is the Role of Pigments in Photosynthesis?
How Does a Plant Convert Light Energy to Chemical Energy?
The Three Stages of Photosynthesis
Characteristics of Aquatic Plants
What is a Dehydration Reaction?
What Is a Producer in an Ecosystem?
What Is the Advantage of C4 Photosynthesis?
What Happens in the Light Reaction of Photosynthesis?
What is Being Oxidized and What is Being Reduced in...
The Effect of Darkness on Photosynthesis
Why Do Plants Need Photosynthesis & Cellular Respiration?
What Is the Sun's Role in Photosynthesis?
Definition of Molecular Bonds
What Are the Two Major Components of an Atom?
Why Is Photosynthesis So Important to Plants?
How Does Photosynthesis Benefit Heterotrophs?
How to Find the X Intercept of a Function
What Happens During Photosynthesis in Plants?