Spinach Photosynthesis

Project by group othsmikosspring2021

Info

Explore Plants need photosynthesis to grow and survive. Photosynthesis occurs when sunlight hits a plant, allowing a chemical process to take place that creates energy for plants. Some parts of this are confusing, like what elements are also needed for photosynthesis, or how exactly sunlight is used in...
Research Question We want to know what kind of light is needed for plants to photosynthesize other than natural light. We want to test different types of lightbulbs to see which is the most effective. Does changing the lightbulb from which a plant receives light affect the plant's rate of photosynthesis?
Predictions We think the lightbulb with the most wattage will cause the plants to photosynthesize the quickest, since the light is more intense. We don't know yet if there is a certain light level we have to achieve or if we just need a lot of light.
Experimental Design Experimental Design: For our experiment we will need spinach, a syringe, a hole puncher, a marker, a ruler, a lamp, clear cups (one for each lightbulb), and at least 2 different lights/lightbulbs (we planned to use LED, 40w incandescent, 100w incandescent lights; our data uses more types of...
Conclusion Light type does affect a plant's rate of photosynthesis. Our results did not match our predictions since the LED lights underperformed all of the incandescent lights. The 75w lights resulted in the most spinach pieces to float each minute and had the first pieces to begin floating for the...

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Erich Huebner
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Erich Huebner
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PlantingScience Staff
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PlantingScience Staff
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Mika
said

Thank you, Dr. Yaqoob, for working with our group! 

    Amina Yaqoob
    said

    Pleasure working with you all. Hats off to all the team members for finally concluding this project.

Mika
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Mika
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Mika
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Mika
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PlantingScience Staff
said

Farewell and Best Wishes

As this research project is now in the final stages of wrapping-up, we wish to thank everyone who participated in this inquiry; the students, mentors, teachers and others behind the scenes. We appreciate all of your efforts and contributions to this online learning community.

Scientific exploration is a process of discovery that can be fun! There are many unanswered questions about plants just waiting for new scientists to consider, investigate, and share.

After the end of the session, we will be updating the platform and archiving groups and projects, after which time new updates/posts will not be able to be added to projects or groups. You have until Thursday, May 6, 2021, to post ALL of your updates, comments, and goodbyes. Please come back and visit the PlantingScience Project Gallery anytime to view this project in the future. You can search the Gallery by keyword, team name, topic, or school name.

Good bye for now.

Warm regards,

The PlantingScience Team

PlantingScience Staff
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Amina Yaqoob
said

Thank you Kate and Mike for summarizing the results. This is spectacular how you conducted the experiment and collected the data at home. Thank you Ansul for your feedback. Kate's results are showing the 100w (Incandescent) a winner while Mika's results are quiet interesting with varying numbers of floating leaves. Let's discuss these. The principle of experiment is obvious that the rate of photosynthesis is directly proportional to the number of leaves floating,  The variations in results can be due to following reasons

1. The difference in leaf size or age can be a factor. Whether all the leaves were of almost same age and size or not? Larger leaves give off more oxygen than the smaller leaves. Similarly the age of the leaf significantly affects the response to changes in light conditions.

2. The difference of time length is also an important aspect. Did the time lengths were precisely measured for each set of experiment. While setting up or switching the lights, the possibility of varying light periods can be a factor.

Summing up, I would like to say that you are doing an amazing job. I love how it is coming along. Looking forward to the hypothesis you'll generate at the end. 

Ansul Lokdarshi
said

Hi y'all, My name is Ansul Lokdarshi and I am one of the project managers for this PlantingScience project. While your mentor @Amina gets a chance to respond, I am here to provide some quick feedback. 

I really like the way you all have summarized the observations into a nice table. Makes it easier to follow and also will be helpful to build some hypotheses. 

@KATE and @ Mika - I'm really confused why this time I only got one to float. I let my experiment go a bit longer than ten minutes (didn't chart the data) and few more floated, but not as many that had floated in the 10 minutes of the first experiment.

When you get a negative result like the above, it can mean many things.

Let's start by some obvious questions:

1. Are the leaves of the same age and size with the new and old experiments?

2. Are the solutions with baking soda made exactly the same concentration as last experiment?

The reason for leaves to float is rate O2 evolution (coming from photosynthesis) and rate of respiration (O2 consumption). As the ratio increases, the leaves will start to float. 

Kate
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Kate
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Kate
said

Last class, we ran our experiment again.

Mika (from home)

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75w (Incandescent) 

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100w (Incandescent) 

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40w (Incandescent) 

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Mika: Error Analysis

    The baking soda sat in the75w cup longer than the other ones because she had to change the light bulb

    She bumped into her table at ~7 minutes and about 4 pieces started to float

Kate (at school)

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LED 

Since last time we ran the lab our lamps were at different angles, I angled them all over the cups.

 

I'm really confused why this time I only got one to float. I let my experiment go a bit longer than ten minutes (didn't chart the data) and few more floated, but not as many that had floated in the 10 minutes of the first experiment.

Our lab station is by a window, so there was a different level of sunlight both times, but both days were sunny days and at the same time of day.

Mika
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Mika
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Oliver
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Oliver
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Oliver
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Oliver
said

So me and Kate ran the experiment Mika described today, with slight modifications and errors. Here is the table for the experiment me and Kate ran: 

 

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LED 

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1/11 

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100w (Incandescent) 

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75w (Incandescent) 

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The 0/9, 2/9 are how many spinech pieces floated to the top. 

The at home data table (preformed by Mika) 

 

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75w (Incandescent) 

0/11 

7/11 

100w (Incandescent) 

0/11 

8/11 

40w (Incandescent) 

6/12 

Errors: 

The cup with the 75 watt bulb was taken out momentarily 

There were only 9 spinach pieces in one cup (75 watt) 

One cup didn't have the baking soda stirred in all the way (100 watt) 

One lamp was angled differently than all the other ones 

Modifications: 

We used a 75 watt lamp rather than a 40 watt lamp.

Oliver
joined the project
Mika
said

Hello!

Continuing our research on plants and photosynthesis, we have planned out a second experiment similar to our first but with changes to the variables. 

Like our first experiment, at least 10 infiltrated spinach disks will be placed into each of our cups, the cups will be filled with water to a 2-inch mark, and we will count how many spinach pieces float to the top of a cup each minute within 10 minutes. Though, the second experiment will include 3 separate cups filled with 1 teaspoon of baking soda each and the cups will be placed under lamps of different lights: one lamp with an LED light, one lamp with a 40 watt incandescent light, one lamp with a 100 watt incandescent light. The baking soda will be used to provide each cup of water/spinach with carbon dioxide for photosynthesis. We are experimenting with different types of lightbulbs to possibly see whether the different lights that a plant may be exposed to when growing inside will affect plant photosynthesis.

We believe that the spinach in the cup under the LED-light lamp will result in more pieces floating to the top faster. With LED lights typically being stronger and brighter than incandescent lights, the amount of light emitted from the LED might help the spinach pieces perform photosynthesis quicker.

    Amina Yaqoob
    said

    great going ! thanks for the heads up!

PlantingScience Staff
said
Hello everyone!

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