Mar 31, 2011

Most efficient process ever known to man is Photosynthesis

Most of the science people are familiar with the laws of Thermodynamics.It is stated that "Energy is neither created, nor destroyed ; it can only be transformed from one state to another".For instance, Photosynthesis which converts the light energy into chemical energy.
The another important statement is that "It is impossible to construct an engine, which absorbs heat from a single body and transforms completely to work without losing some energy".For instance, combustion of petroleum products in combustion engines produces energy, which is never completely converted into workdone.It is proven that only an average of 30 to 40 % of energy is only converted to work obtained from combustion of fuels.
Based on this, the efficiency of a machine or a process is calculated given by the ratio of output to the input, multiplied by 100.The output may be the workdone or heat energy released, while the input may be the fuel, which is converted to energy to give the output.It is stated that,"Efficiency of a machine can never be cent percentage" which accompanies the second statement.Any engine with cent % efficiency are said to be perpetual engine, but it is hypothetical.While the most efficient man made process is fermentation whose percentage efficiency is about 57%.No man made engines exceeds the efficiency percentage of 60%.But the thing we can't make is being made by the nature, i.e Photosynthesis.It is scientifically proven that the average efficiency of photosynthesis in common plants is 70%.Let we know how it is.

We know that the efficiency of a process is given by the ratio of output to the input.In photosynthesis, the output is hexose sugar i.e Glucose(C6H12O6), While the input is light energy i.e photons measured in terms of quanta.It is seen that one glucose molecule has 656 kilocalories of energy, and one quanta has 40 kilocalories of energy.The formation of one molecule of glucose needs 24 quanta in average photosynthetic plants.Hence 24x40=960 kcals of energy is needed to produce single glucose molecule with 656 kcals of energy.The percentage efficiency for this process is given as follows.
Therefore the % efficiency of photosynthesis in an usual plant is about 68.33% !!.
And the astonishing fact is that an photosynthetic unicellular organism called chlorella, needs only 16.8 quanta per glucose molecule i.e only 16.8x40=672 kcals which is nearer to the output of 656 kcals, so that efficiency of this photosynthesis in chlorella is given by,
 which is apprx. 100% !!!, since the values may vary in a bit.

Photosynthesis is a complex process, which man cannot create artificially with his a litttle bit of brain.
And no process have the efficiency of  about 100%, with the only exception of photosynthesis.

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