February 20, 2012

Nalood na ako sa Energy Pyramid

An energy pyramid is the graphical representation of the trophic levels (nutritional) by which the incoming solar energy is transferred into an ecosystem. The source of energy for living beings on Earth is the Sun. The energy that the Sun emits at present is of 1366.75 W/m^2 (400 years ago, it was of 1363.48 W/m^2). When the studies of the capture of energy by the producer organisms (photosynthetic organisms) were made, the Solar Irradiance (SI) was of 1365.45 W/m^2. The energy usable by photosynthetic organisms is 697.04 W/m^2; nevertheless, the photosynthetic organisms take only 0.65 W/m^2 and the rest of the incident energy on the surface is transferred to the abiotic surroundings (oceans, soil, atmosphere, etc.) and from there, the energy is emitted to the outer space and to the Gravity field (Guth. 1999. Pp. 29-31). The atmosphere absorbs 191.345 W/m^2, maintaining the tropospheric temperature of Earth in the hospitable 35.40 °C (95.72 °F).

On the diagram, the ciphers expressed in the boxes at the left side of the pyramid represent the energy taken by each individual. For example, the amount of energy acquired by the herbivores is equivalent to the ingestion of one gram of organic material from photosynthetic organisms. Each subsequent amount of energy (green rectangle) in the pyramid (towards the peak) is the energy that would be obtained by each gram of organic material originated from the underlying level. Detritivores or detritivorous are organisms that fed on remnants of organic matter, like corpses, excrements, etc. Detritivores take advantage of ca. 57% from the energy stored by the producers.

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