Published on February 7, 2008
Cycling of Matter in Ecosystems: Cycling of Matter in Ecosystems Life has 5 major requirements:: Life has 5 major requirements: Water Nutrients Oxygen Energy Inorganic carbon Slide3: If any of these are missing, life as we know it could not exist. The biosphere contains a finite number of atoms and new compounds can be formed only from those atoms released from other sources. This underlines the necessity of the recycling of matter for living systems. There is a limited amount of matter available on this planet; therefore it is important that we recycle it. Slide4: Chemistry Amazing Race Slide5: Carbon is THE key element for living things. Every carbon atom on this planet has been recycled from the prehistoric time to now. These carbon atoms can be found in the plants that we eat today. Every time we eat, organic matter that was once part of another living organism enters our body. Slide6: Write the ‘recipe’ for photosynthesis using the format below: water + soil mud Carbon Cycle: Carbon Cycle During photosynthesis, plants use light energy to combine carbon dioxide (inorganic) from the atmosphere and water from the soil. 6CO2 + 6H2O + light C6H12O6 + 6O2 Slide8: Write the ‘recipe’ for cellular respiration. Slide9: Some inorganic carbon is released back into the atmosphere through cellular respiration as carbon dioxide. C6H12O6 + 6O2 6H2O + 6CO2 Slide10: Because photosynthesis and cellular respiration are complimentary processes, and because the carbon that they use is repeatedly cycled through both processes, this relationship is called the carbon cycle. Slide11: Decomposition is another way that organic matter is recycled. After death, the decomposers break down the organisms in order to release the organic matter contained in them. (see Figure 3 p. 51) Slide12: 100% graphite Slide13: Charcoal Slide16: In small groups, you are going to draw out the carbon cycle as best as you can recall it. Try to include as many elements as possible. Use a different colour for arrows.