Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Looking for a long life burner

  1. Jun 24, 2008 #1
    of late i have discovered the beautiful smell that my lemon myrtle can give when i rub the leaves together between my hands. It got me thinking, what can i do to get this smell throughout my house?
    i have thought of two ideas so far (iam open to any others): dry the leaves and turn it into an incense candle or extract the oil by soaking the leaves in vodka and freezing the liquid so that the oil goes to the top before the vodka freezes

    i was thinking of burning the dry leaves but how can i reduce the rate in which it burns (please keep in mind it can't be poisonous)?
    i did think of adding charcoal with it, separate it a bit but iam not sure how well that would actually work.

    any advice is welcome! :)
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 24, 2008 #2
    Since you mentioned you had thought about extracting the oil, what about just using that to create a typical scented wax candle? There are plenty of how-to guides online about making your own scented candles, you'd just be using a homemade liquid scent instead of a commercial scent.

    Otherwise, making your own incense (loose or cone/stick) at home is also very doable. Here, again, you can go online and pick your preferred method from the how-to guides out there.
     
  4. Jun 24, 2008 #3

    chemisttree

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper
    Gold Member

    I wouldn't dry the leaves first. Those oils you are smelling are volatile oils...

    Extract them fresh with Everclear or try steam distillation. You might even try adding the wax to the pot and heat with a sachet of the fresh leaves. If the wax melts at something under the boiling point of water you could devise a liquid-liquid extraction system directly into the wax.
     
  5. Jun 26, 2008 #4
    thanks to both of you for replying

    why not dry them (if it isn't done at a temperature to denature the oils, that is)?

    any decent way that i could conduct steam distillation considering i dont have any of the normal equipment around the place (i.e. useing household utensils)?

    its just the vodka idea takes a while and has no really reassurance of its purity/concentration
     
  6. Jun 26, 2008 #5
    oh and my new idea for getting the smell throughout the house is a small candle under a ceramic plate with the oil on top - giving enough heat to vaporise yet not enough to denature it
     
  7. Jun 26, 2008 #6

    chemisttree

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper
    Gold Member

    When you dry the leaves, you are also drying out the essential oils... since they are volatile just like water is.

    Steam distillation requires specialized equipment.

    Essential oils are usually pretty nonpolar things. They would extract nicely into melted wax, I believe.
     
  8. Jun 27, 2008 #7
    thanks for that - helps a lot :)
     
Know someone interested in this topic? Share this thread via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook

Have something to add?



Similar Discussions: Looking for a long life burner
  1. Look for pH (Replies: 1)

  2. Looking for a lab (Replies: 4)

  3. Half life (Replies: 1)

Loading...