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Handbook of Energy by Christopher G. Morris, Cutler J. Cleveland

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Section 1

Bioenergetics

Living organisms require energy to grow, reproduce, capture more energy, maintain their vital functions, and to protect themselves from predation. Biological energetics refers to the study of energy use in living systems to perform these essential tasks. The scale of inquiry ranges from energy use in cellular functions to energy flows in entire ecosystems.

Photosynthesis, the process of converting light energy to chemical energy and storing it in the bonds of sugar, is the ultimate basis of food energy for most life on the planet. The foundation for understanding photosynthesis was laid in the 18th century when English chemist Joseph Priestley discovered that plants somehow convert the gas breathed out by animals and created ...

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