|How does oxygen help fire to stay burning?|
|Question Date: 2016-04-29|
A burning fire is a chemical reaction. One
of the components that is needed to react in this
chemical reaction is oxygen. Therefore
without oxygen, the fire will stop burning. When
you throw water onto a fire, you are both cooling
it and preventing it from accessing more oxygen.
To answer this question, we need to know how the
fire starts burning first. Typically, fire comes
from a chemical reaction between oxygen in the
atmosphere and some sort of fuel including wood,
gasoline and so on. Therefore, oxygen appears
as a reactant in the chemical reaction of
combustion. If we don't provide the reaction
with oxygen, then the reaction will not start.
Therefore, oxygen helps fire to stay
Fire is a chemical reaction. It requires fuel
to burn, and oxygen. It's actually the same
chemical reaction that keeps you alive (which is
why you would die without oxygen). The oxygen
combines with the fuel to turn into a new chemical
- for sugars (like wood is made out of), these new
chemicals are carbon dioxide gas and water vapor.
You see fire when a chemical reaction happens,
called combustion. Combustion requires
energy (usually heat) and two types of matter:
oxygen and a fuel. Often the fuel is carbon,
like the carbon in a candle wick, in a wooden log,
or in gasoline. Combustion uses oxygen to burn the
fuel. Without oxygen, combustion cannot occur.
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