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Remote sensing of the xanthophyll cycle and chlorophyll fluorescence in sunflower leaves and canopies

Summary

Sudden illumination of sunflower (Helianthus annuus L. cv. CGL 208) leaves and canopies led to excess absorbed PFD and induced apparent reflectance changes in the green, red and near-infrared detectable with a remote spectroradiometer. The green shift, centered near 531 nm, was caused by reflectance changes associated with the de-epoxidation of violaxanthin to zeaxanthin via antheraxanthin and with the chloroplast thylakoid pH gradient. The red (685 nm) and near-infrared (738 nm) signals were due to quenching of chlorophyll fluorescence. Remote sensing of shifts in these spectral regions provides non-destructive information on in situ photosynthetic performance and could lead to improved techniques for remote sensing of canopy photosynthesis.

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CIW Publication #1072

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Gamon, J.A., Field, C.B., Bilger, W. et al. Remote sensing of the xanthophyll cycle and chlorophyll fluorescence in sunflower leaves and canopies. Oecologia 85, 1–7 (1990). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00317336

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Key words

  • Chlorophyll fluorescence
  • Photosynthesis
  • Remote sensing
  • Sunflower (Helianthus annuus)
  • Xanthophyll cycle