Is there any fuels without hydrogen that will combust. My friend believes there might be and do to my experience I have never heard of one. Please explain and if u can show a balanced equation of this combustion.


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  • $\begingroup$ Other then base element's suck as sulphate. $\endgroup$ – Liam Molyneux Aug 27 '15 at 2:52
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    $\begingroup$ And carbon and iron and magnesium and... Why would elements be special? Would steel count than? Your friend is quite wrong... $\endgroup$ – Jon Custer Aug 27 '15 at 2:58
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    $\begingroup$ Cyanogen seems to be an example ($\ce{(CN)2 + O2 -> 2CO + N2}$). Check this paper, it briefly discusses the reaction. Despite not being open access, the first page is available - and it contains only one page... $\endgroup$ – Molx Aug 27 '15 at 3:20
  • $\begingroup$ Prior to electricity, most households were heated by burning solid fuel known as coal (which is basically carbon). Does that count? $\endgroup$ – Ivan Neretin Aug 27 '15 at 7:47
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    $\begingroup$ Fuels like coal are made out of carbon hydrogen chains $\endgroup$ – Liam Molyneux Aug 28 '15 at 17:21

A combustion reaction is classified as a reaction between a fuel and oxygen to produce energy. The reaction: 2CO(g) + O2(g) = 2CO2(g) fulfills this definition, is exothermic, and does not use hydrogen.

  • $\begingroup$ So does the reaction C + O2 -> CO2, i.e. the combustion of coke (or graphite or diamonds). $\endgroup$ – Curt F. Aug 31 '15 at 4:31

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