Ecology. the circulation of carbon atoms in the biosphere as a result of photosynthetic conversion of carbon dioxide into complex organic compounds by plants, which are consumed by other organisms: the carbon returns to the atmosphere in the form of carbon dioxide as a result of respiration, decay by fungi, bacteria, etc., and combustion of fossil fuels.
Astrophysics. a cycle of nuclear transformations in the interiors of the stars by means of which hydrogen is gradually converted into helium with the release of nuclear energy.
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How to use carbon cycle in a sentence
This annual publication includes our best estimates of each contributor to the Earth’s carbon cycle.Recent CO₂ emissions flattened out by revised forest data | Scott K. Johnson | November 5, 2021 | Ars Technica
Fish and their feces play a hugely important and vastly underrated role in ocean chemistry and the carbon cycle that shapes Earth’s climate, according to a new study led by Bianchi and published in the journal Science Advances.Climate scientists should pay more attention to fish poop. Really. | Benji Jones | October 8, 2021 | Vox
The mercury and carbon data together suggest the increase in mercury came from a “major source of volcanism that was capable of impacting the global carbon cycle,” rather than local eruptions, the team writes.A volcano-induced rainy period made Earth’s climate dinosaur-friendly | Megan Sever | September 30, 2021 | Science News
Because photosynthesis plays a critical role in the planet’s carbon cycle, pyrenoids “might also be able to contribute to solving other problems that we’re facing in sustainability, including climate change,” he says.
Mineralization is already the main mechanism nature uses in the so-called “slow carbon cycle.”Asbestos could be a powerful weapon against climate change (you read that right) | James Temple | October 6, 2020 | MIT Technology Review
One of the defining characteristics of a Medean extinction is the disruption of the carbon cycle.Here on Earth, The Forgotten Founding Father, and Other Reviews | The Daily Beast | April 30, 2011 | THE DAILY BEAST
British Dictionary definitions for carbon cycle
the circulation of carbon between living organisms and their surroundings. Carbon dioxide from the atmosphere is synthesized by plants into plant tissue, which is ingested and metabolized by animals and converted to carbon dioxide again during respiration and decay
four thermonuclear reactions believed to be the source of energy in many stars. Carbon nuclei function as catalysts in the fusion of protons to form helium nuclei
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Scientific definitions for carbon cycle
The continuous process by which carbon is exchanged between organisms and the environment. Carbon dioxide is absorbed from the atmosphere by plants and algae and converted to carbohydrates by photosynthesis. Carbon is then passed into the food chain and returned to the atmosphere by the respiration and decay of animals, plants, and other organisms. The burning of fossil fuels also releases carbon dioxide into the atmosphere.
A cycle of thermonuclear reactions caused by the absorption of protons by the nucleus of a carbon-12 atom, in which helium and isotopes of nitrogen, carbon, and oxygen are produced, and resulting in the regeneration of a carbon-12 atom so that the process can begin again. The carbon cycle is thought to be the source of significant amounts of energy in the Sun and other stars. Also called Bethe cycle carbon-nitrogen cycle See also proton-proton chain triple alpha process.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Cultural definitions for carbon cycle
In ecology, the movement of atoms of carbon through the biosphere. Molecules of carbon dioxide are taken in by plants, to be incorporated into their tissues, which may then be eaten by and incorporated into animals. Animals return the carbon to the air in the form of carbon dioxide, and the cycle starts again. (See photosynthesis and respiration.)
The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.