Substances which burn in air to produce heat and light are called combustible substances.
Eg :- wood, coal, charcoal, kerosene, petrol, diesel, liquified petroleum gas (LPG), compressed natural gas (CNG) etc.
2) Combustion :-
The chemical process in which a substance reacts with oxygen to produce heat is called combustion.
The substance which undergoes combustion is called a combustible substance. It is also called a fuel.
Air is necessary for combustion.
Sometimes light is also produced during combustion either as a flame or as a glow.
3. Ignition temperature :-
The minimum temperature at which a substance catches fire and burns is called its ignition temperature.
A substance will not catch fire and burn if its temperature is lower than its ignition temperature.
Different substances have different ignition temperatures.
Eg:- The ignition temperature of kerosene is less than the ignition temperature of wood.
Substances which have very low ignition temperature and can easily catch fire with a flame are calledinflammable substances. Eg:- petrol, alcohol, LPG, CNG etc.
4) Conditions necessary for combustion :-
The conditions necessary for combustion are :-
ii) Air (to supply oxygen).
iii) Heat (to raise the temperature beyond the ignition temperature.
A substance will not burn without one or more of these conditions.
5) How do we control fire ?
The conditions necessary for producing fire are :-
i) Fuel ii) Air (to supply oxygen)
iii) Heat (to raise the temperature of the fuel beyond its ignition temperature).
Fire can be controlled by removing any one or more of these conditions.
A fire extinguisher cuts off the supply of air or brings down the temperature of the fuel or both and controls the fire.
6) Methods of controlling fire :-
i) By using water :-
Water is the most common fire extinguisher. It can be used only when materials like wood , paper etc. are on fire.
Water cannot be used if electrical equipments are on fire because water conducts electricity and can harm those trying to put out the fire.
Water cannot be used to put out oil and petrol fires because they float on water and continue to burn.
ii) By using carbon dioxide:-
Carbon dioxide is the best fire extinguisher to put out fire caused by inflammable materials like oil and petrol and electrical equipments. Carbon dioxide is heavier than air and it covers the fire and cuts off the supply of oxygen and puts out the fire.
Carbon dioxide is stored at high pressure as liquid in cylinders. Chemicals like sodium bicarbonate (baking soda), potassium bicarbonate produce carbon dioxide near the fire.
7) Types of combustion :-
There are three main types of combustion. They are :-
i) Rapid combustion
ii) Spontaneous combustion
Rapid combustion:- is combustion in which a substance burns rapidly and produces heat and light with the help of external heat.
Eg:- burning of LPG
Spontaneous combustion:- is combustion in which a substance burns spontaneously and produces heat and light without the help of external heat. Eg:- phosphorus burns spontaneously at room temperature
9) Flame :-
Flame :- is the zone of combustion of a combustible substance.
Substances which vapourise during burning produce flames.
Eg:- kerosene, wax etc.
Substances which do not vapourise during burning do not produce flames.
Eg:- coal, charcoal etc.
10) Structure of a candle flame :-
i) Outer zone
ii) Middle zone
iii) Inner zone
In the outer zone complete combustion of the fuel takes place and the colour of the flame is blue and is the hottest part of the flame. It is the non luminous part of the flame.
In the middle zone partial combustion of the fuel takes place and the colour of the flame is yellow and is moderately hot part of the flame. It is the luminous part of the flame.
In the inner zone there are unburnt vapours of the fuel and the colour is black and is least hot part.
Fuels are of three main types. They are :-
i) Solid fuels :- Eg:- wood, coal, charcoal etc.
ii) Liquid fuels :- Eg:- kerosene, petrol, diesel etc.
iii) Gaseous fuels :- Eg:- CNG, LPG, biogas, hydrogen etc.
12) Characteristics of a good fuel :-
The main characteristics of a good fuel are :-
i) Is readily available.
ii) Is cheap.
iii) Is easy to store and transport.
iv) Burns at a moderate rate.
v) Produces a large amount of heat.
vi) Does not leave behind any undesirable substances.
vii) Does not cause pollution.
The calorific value of a fuel :- is the amount of heat energy produced on complete combustion of 1 kg of a fuel. The calorific valve of a fuel is expressed in kilojoule per kg.
Calorific values of some fuels in kilojule per kg
Cowdung cake 6000 - 8000 Wood 17000 - 22000 Coal 25000 - 33000
Petrol 45000 Kerosene 45000 Diesel 45000
Methane 50000 CNG 50000 LPG 55000
Biogas 35000 - 40000 Hydrogen 150000
Hydrogen has the highest calorific value among all fuels.
i) Fuels like wood, coal, petroleum release unburnt carbon particles which cause respiratory diseases like asthma.
iii) Burning of most fuels release carbon dioxide gas which causes rise in the temperature of the atmosphere. This is called global warming. It causes melting of polar ice, rise in sea level and flooding of coastal areas.
iv) Burning of coal and petroleum release oxides of sulphur and nitrogen which dissolve in rain water and forms acid rain. It is harmful for crops, soil and damages buildings.