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Controlled explosion of a methane-air mixture

Description

This demonstration is used to show how a flammable gas like methane when burnt can draw in oxygen to create an explosive mixture. A nice link to domestic gas explosions can also be made.

Type of Activity

:
demonstration

Audience

:
Teacher

Age Group

:
11 to 18 years

Credits

:
This is an experiment from the Practical Chemistry project, developed by the Nuffield Foundation and the Royal Society of Chemistry.
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Apparatus Chemicals

Eye protection for the demonstrator

Safety screens

A large tin with a press-on lid (Note 1)

Glass tubing, 2 - 3 cm in diameter, 30 - 50 cm long

Epoxy resin adhesive (e.g. Araldite)

Length of rubber tubing

Boss, clamp and stand

Wooden splints

Methane (natural gas) supply (EXTREMELY FLAMMABLE)

Refer to Health & Safety and Technical notes section below for additional information.

 


 


 





This demonstration is used to show how a flammable gas like methane when burnt can draw in oxygen to create an explosive mixture. A nice link to domestic gas explosions can also be made.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

This is a resource from the Practical Chemistry project, developed by the Nuffield Foundation and the Royal Society of Chemistry. This collection of over 200 practical activities demonstrates a wide range of chemical concepts and processes. Each activity contains comprehensive information for teachers and technicians, including full technical notes and step-by-step procedures. Practical Chemistry activities accompany Practical Physics and Practical Biology.

The experiment is also part of the Royal Society of Chemistry's Continuing Professional Development course: Chemistry for non-specialists