Metal and wood

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  • #1
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why is that metal can melt into liquid form but not wood, can anyone help me, thx
 

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  • #2
Claude Bile
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Wood is mostly carbon, whose melting point is around 1500 K (but don't quote me on that). It will therefore combust long before you reach a temperature high enough to melt it.

Claude.
 
  • #3
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And even if you completely remove all oxigen, thus preventing combustion, IIRC the wood would transform into other stuff (chemically) before it reaches that temperature (or whatever the correct temperature is).
 
  • #4
russ_watters
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alpha_wolf said:
And even if you completely remove all oxigen, thus preventing combustion, IIRC the wood would transform into other stuff (chemically) before it reaches that temperature (or whatever the correct temperature is).
In junior high, I did an experiment where we heated wood in a test tube over a bunsen burner. It does exactly that: you drive off water vapor and methane, leaving carbon.
 
  • #5
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alpha_wolf said:
And even if you completely remove all oxigen, thus preventing combustion, IIRC the wood would transform into other stuff (chemically) before it reaches that temperature (or whatever the correct temperature is).
Does this mean that the melting point of wood is actually the melting point of the products formed from wood after it's transformed?
 
  • #6
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russ_watters said:
In junior high, I did an experiment where we heated wood in a test tube over a bunsen burner. It does exactly that: you drive off water vapor and methane, leaving carbon.
That's how they make coal, isn't it?
 
  • #7
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russ_watters said:
In junior high, I did an experiment where we heated wood in a test tube over a bunsen burner. It does exactly that: you drive off water vapor and methane, leaving carbon.
Crumbles said:
That's how they make coal, isn't it?
Now that I think about it, I think we used to make our own coal when I was little, by heating pieces of wood in our kitchen oven. I don't remember for sure, but we probably wrapped it in something to prevent it from combusting.
Crumbles said:
Does this mean that the melting point of wood is actually the melting point of the products formed from wood after it's transformed?
I'd say that wood basically doesn't have a melting point at all. Btw, not all materials melt (at least at normal temperature and pressure) - some go straight to gas, e.g. CO2. It's called sublimation.
 
  • #8
russ_watters
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Crumbles said:
Does this mean that the melting point of wood is actually the melting point of the products formed from wood after it's transformed?
You could say that: wood is just too complex of a mixture of chemicals for it to have a melting point.
 
  • #9
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So, the ashes left after combusting wood is carbon right?
 
  • #10
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ArmoSkater87 said:
So, the ashes left after combusting wood is carbon right?
yup :smile:
 

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