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Science Forum

  1. Standard member sonhouse
    Fast and Curious
    11 Apr '09 19:31
    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/04/090409152740.htm

    Here is my question about that. It mentions an organic fuel and an oxidizer, in this case copper oxide. How can an oxide be an oxidizer, it already has undergone an oxidation reaction.
  2. 15 Apr '09 05:57
    Originally posted by sonhouse
    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/04/090409152740.htm

    Here is my question about that. It mentions an organic fuel and an oxidizer, in this case copper oxide. How can an oxide be an oxidizer, it already has undergone an oxidation reaction.
    If you put one oxide with a metal that has a higher affinity for oxygen then the oxygen moves across, thus oxidizing the other metal.
  3. Standard member sonhouse
    Fast and Curious
    15 Apr '09 22:13
    Originally posted by twhitehead
    If you put one oxide with a metal that has a higher affinity for oxygen then the oxygen moves across, thus oxidizing the other metal.
    But the fuel is organic, not metallic. So if you put Zinc next to copper oxide, the result would be zinc oxide and pure copper precipitate?
  4. 16 Apr '09 05:44
    Originally posted by sonhouse
    But the fuel is organic, not metallic. So if you put Zinc next to copper oxide, the result would be zinc oxide and pure copper precipitate?
    It is basically an exothermic chemical reaction as is most burning. The only difference between it and burning in air is that instead of pure oxygen, we have copper oxide as one of the reactants.

    The article you quote is comparing it to gunpowder. I suspect the reaction would be similar to that of gunpowder which you can of course learn about here:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gunpowder

    Note that it is all about the movement of oxygen from the 'oxidizer' to the 'fuel'.