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Time-Resolved Studies of Light Propagation in Crassula and Phaseolus Leaves

  • Jonas Johansson
  • Roger Berg
  • Antonio Pifferi
  • Sune Svanberg
  • Lars Olof Björn
Publishing year: 1999
Language: English
Pages: 242-247
Publication/Series: Photochemistry and Photobiology
Volume: 69
Issue: 2
Document type: Journal article
Publisher: American Society for Photobiology

Abstract english

Time-resolved transmittance was used to extract in vivo optical properties of leaves of green plants experimentally. In time-resolved transmittance measurements an ultrashort light pulse is directed onto the surface of the object and the transmitted light is measured with a time resolution in the range of picoseconds. A table-top terawatt laser was used to generate 200 fs light pulses at 790 nm with a repetition rate of 10 Hz. The light pulses were focused through a cuvette filled with water to produce white light pulses and optical filters were placed in the beam path to select the wavelength of the light focused onto the leaf surface. The time profiles of the light transmitted through the leaves was recorded with a streak camera having a time resolution of about 2.5 ps. Results from Crassula falcata and Phaseolus vulgaris studied at 550, 670 and 740 nm are reported. The three selected wavelength regions represent medium, high and a low absorption of light, respectively. A library of curves was generated using Monte Carlo simulation, and the absorption and scattering coefficients were extracted by comparison of experimental curves with this library. Our results suggest that in the case of the thin (200 μm) Phaseolus leaves and certainly in the case of the thick (4 mm) Crassula leaves, light scattering plays an important role in light transport through the leaf and should also affect light flux in these leaves.


  • Atom and Molecular Physics and Optics
  • Biological Sciences


  • ISSN: 0031-8655
Lars Olof Björn
E-mail: lars_olof [dot] bjorn [at] biol [dot] lu [dot] se

Professor emeritus

Molecular Cell Biology

+46 46 222 72 53