Chlorophyll A vs B2: Difference and Comparison

Plants extract life-giving oxygen, which they excrete as a byproduct. It’s the byproduct produced when plants convert light energy into food using carbon dioxide and water in the process of photosynthesis. The light that is absorbed by plants and used for photosynthesis is now made possible by a specific green-pigmented substance called chlorophyll. We’ll also look into the differences between chlorophyll A and B2.

Key Takeaways

  1. Chlorophyll A absorbs blue-violet and red light, making it the primary photosynthetic pigment, while chlorophyll B absorbs blue and orange-red light, functioning as an accessory pigment.
  2. Chlorophyll A has a methyl group (–CH3) in its structure, while chlorophyll B has an aldehyde group (–CHO).
  3. Chlorophyll A plays a direct role in photosynthesis as a reaction center, whereas chlorophyll B assists by capturing and transferring light energy to chlorophyll A.

Chlorophyll A and B2

The difference between chlorophyll A and B2 is that chlorophyll A contributes the most to photosynthesis, whereas B2 assists the former. Aside from that, a few other distinctions make it easy to distinguish between the two pigment components. Both are responsible for the plant’s green color; however, in spinach, chlorophyll-a is present in greater quantities than chlorophyll b2.

Chlorophyll A and B2

Chlorophyll A is a natural pigment that gives plants their green color. It’s a photoreceptor, to be precise. It’s a porphyrin ring with a methyl group or CH3 in its side chain, according to the chemistry. As a result, the wavelength of light absorbed by chlorophyll a differs from that of chlorophyll b2 in the visible spectrum of sunlight.

The porphyrin ring is present in chlorophyll b2, but the side chain contains an aldehyde group or CHO. It also functions as a photoreceptor, assisting chlorophyll A in the absorption of sunlight. In contrast to chlorophyll a, the wavelength absorbed by b2 is longer, which is why it complements the former so well.


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Comparison Table

Parameters of comparison Chlorophyll A B2 
Sidechain The methyl group (-CH3)Aldehyde (-CHO)
What wavelengths of light does it absorb?430 nm to 660 nm450 nm to 660 nm
What colors does it absorb?Violet- blue, orange-red Orange-red only
Molecular weight 839.51 g/mol907.49 g/mol
Solubility in polar solventsLess soluble More soluble 

What is Chlorophyll A?

Chlorophyll, the pigment itself, can be divided into two types; we’ll be discussing one of them, chlorophyll A. Along with the porphyrin ring, the side chain of a chlorophyll molecule has a methyl group. This is the main difference between chlorophyll a and b2. The natural pigment functions as a photoreceptor and assists in the photosynthesis process. It absorbs sunlight and assists plants in the production of carbohydrates by utilizing carbon dioxide and water. Chlorophyll A has a molecular weight of 839.51 grams per mole.

If we consider the solubility of the chlorophyll A molecule, they are less soluble in a polar medium in contrast to that of the b2 molecule. It also absorbs light with wavelengths ranging from 430 to 660 nanometers. Violet-blue and orange-red are the colors that range between the two regions. The way chlorophyll-a and b2 work complements each other, which means that the wavelength of light that chlorophyll A lacks to absorb is assisted by the b2 molecule, and thus they both play a critical role in absorbing solar energy. Furthermore, there are times when the amount of chlorophyll a and b2 present in a plant is not equal; for example, most of the green color in spinach comes from chlorophyll b2.

What is B2?

B2 is for the other type of chlorophyll, a natural pigment found in plants and bacteria that gives them a green color. The difference between chlorophyll a and chlorophyll b2 is being discussed here. Chlorophyll b2 is a porphyrin ring with a side chain containing an aldehyde group or CHO. This is why it absorbed light with wavelengths ranging from 450 to 660 nanometers. The color orange-red is prevalent in the area. The complementary color is reflected out as they absorb this color, giving the plants their green color.

In addition to having a molecular weight of 907.49 grams per mole, chlorophyll b2 is highly soluble in a polar medium. They make up roughly a quarter of all chlorophyll in plants. They can be found in all green plants as well as green algae. They are thought to control the antenna’s size. It reflects a yellow-green hue that contrasts with the orange-red hue. The compound’s single and double bonds are distributed in an alternate pattern, allowing b2 to absorb light by stabilizing its electron through delocalization. These delocalized polyenes also have a high absorption capacity. As a result, it serves as an effective photoreceptor. Each of the types complements the other.

Main Differences Between Chlorophyll A and B2

  1. The side chain of chlorophyll-a contains a methyl group, whereas the side chain of chlorophyll b2 contains an aldehyde.
  2. Chlorophyll a absorbs wavelengths ranging from 430 nm to 660 nm, whereas b2 absorbs wavelengths ranging from 450 nm to 660 nm.
  3. Chlorophyll a absorbs violet-blue and orange-red colors, while b2 absorbs only orange-red.
  4. Chlorophyll emits a blue-green color, whereas be emits a yellow-green color.
  5. In a polar medium, chlorophyll a is less soluble, whereas chlorophyll b2 is highly soluble.
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