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Is this combustion of steam?

  1. Apr 20, 2016 #1
    Once upon a time I managed (unintentionally) to use a primitive centrifuge to spin a jet of steam. The spinning steam jet separated (or more likely partially separated) into hydrogen and oxygen components. A blue flame appeared at the confluence of gasses. I do believe that steam had partial combustion.
    Any ideas?
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 20, 2016 #2


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    Staff: Mentor

    I'm not sure what you saw, but you can't separate hydrogen and oxygen from water with a centrifuge.
  4. Apr 21, 2016 #3


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    Staff: Mentor

    Is there anything that can burn in steam? From what I remember thermal decomposition of water requires temperatures well above the typical temperature of steam used in industrial settings.
  5. Apr 21, 2016 #4


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    Not exactly burn but steam coming into contact with red hot coke produces the dangerous ' water gas ' .

    Accidental or out of control production of water gas in malfunctioning equipment in industry caused several serious incidents in Victorian times .

    Coke can be formed when many carbon based materials are overheated .
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