Metals in Photosynthesis

During photosynthesis, light energy is converted into chemical energy. Photosynthesis is divided into the following primary processes:

  •   Light absorption (energy uptake)
  •   Excitone transport (guided energy tranfer)
  •   Charge separation and electron transport

These processes depend on a number of components, including the metals magnesium and manganese.


Photosynthesis is a very complex process; many of its individual reactions have not yet been fully elucidated.

Also, the final product depends on the photosystem of the organism (bacteria, algae, green plants) in which it takes place (bacterial photosynthesis, photosystem I and II).

Only in higher organisms (e.g. green plants), which also have the photosystem II, oxygen is produced in a subsequent reaction following the actual photosynthetic process.


The picture shows a bacterial photosystem (yellow) embedded in a membrane.