# Carbonation

Bubbles of carbon dioxide float to the surface of a carbonated soft drink.

Carbonation is the process of dissolving carbon dioxide in liquid. The process usually involves carbon dioxide under high pressure. When the pressure is reduced, the carbon dioxide is released from the solution as small bubbles, which cause the solution to "fizz". This effect is seen in carbonated soft drinks.

Carbonation can also describe a chemical reaction, one example of which is a key step in photosynthesis.

## Chemistry

Carbon dioxide is weakly soluble in water, therefore it separates into a gas. The process of carbon dioxide effervescing from a solution is represented by the following chemical reaction, in which aqueous carbonic acid converts to carbon dioxide and water:

$\mbox{H}_2\mbox{O} + \mbox{CO}_2 \longrightarrow \mbox{H}_2\mbox{CO}_3$

## Biochemistry

Champagne carbonation propelling a cork. Photographed with an air-gap flash.

Carbonation also describes the incorporation of carbon dioxide into chemical compounds. Our carbon-based life originates from a carbonation reaction that is most often catalysed by the enzyme RuBisCO. So important is this carbonation process that a significant fraction of leaf mass consists of this carbonating enzyme.[1]

Carbonation of ribulose bisphosphate is the starting point of the incorporation of carbon dioxide into the biosphere.