What happens when chlorophyll and other pigments absorb light?

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In the process of photosynthesis, chlorophyll goes into a peculiar excited state which can survive for an unusually long time. Furthermore, the excitation energy can hope from chlorophyll molecule to chlorophyll molecule. In this way a large collection of chlorphyll molecules function as an "antenna" that collects many photons and funnels their energy down to a reaction center, where one particular chlorophyll will lose an electron.

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