What Is Combustion?

798 Words 4 Pages
Combustion of Alkanes
What is combustion?
Combustion is a chemical process where a fuel reacts with oxygen and releases heat. The fuel can either be a solid, liquid or gas and the oxidizer, the source of oxygen can also be a solid liquid or gas. A new chemical substance is created from the fuel and source of oxygen. These new chemical substances are referred to as exhaust.
For combustion to occur, a fuel, oxygen and heat are required.

In an alkane, the more carbon atoms that are present, the more heat that is produced because of combustion.
Examples of Alkane Fuels:
• Methane – main alkane present in natural gas (e.g. North Sea gas)
• Propane – used in camping gas
• Butane – Calor gas (a brand of bottled gas used in Britain and Ireland)
…show more content…
If the amount of oxygen is reduced even further then soot (carbon) is produced.
Incomplete combustion occurs more often with longer chains of hydrocarbons as they require more oxygen to combust completely as opposed to shorter chains of hydrocarbons which need less oxygen to burn completely.
Consequences of Incomplete Combustion in the Home
Carbon monoxide, a product of incomplete combustion, is a very dangerous gas that can seriously harm your body. In the body, oxygen is transferred by hemoglobin in the red blood cells but carbon monoxide binds more tightly to the hemoglobin than oxygen so if oxygen and carbon monoxide are both inhaled then the carbon monoxide is more likely to bind to the hemoglobin instead of oxygen which limits the hemoglobin available to transfer oxygen and this can reduce the body’s oxygen intake which can be very harmful.
NOx (an abbreviation for oxides of nitrogen)
Oxides of nitrogen (e.g. NO, NO2 and N2O4) are produced when there is sufficient energy to facilitate a reaction between oxygen and nitrogen in the air. Nitrogen oxides form from the reaction between N2 and

Related Documents