Why do we cook our food wrapped in aluminium foil? Why does metal rust? It all comes down to oxidation reactions. Discover what happens to cause these reactions, and how to stop them.
- The combustion of any element is always an oxidation reaction.
- Oxidation can be both destructive and useful.
- Rusting of iron attacks structures such as bridges and boats.
- Aluminium oxide provides a protective layer on the foil and prevents oxygen and water reaching the pure metal.
This is the reaction of pure aluminium powder when heated in air.
It almost explodes, giving out a lot of heat, and forming aluminium oxide.
Aluminium + oxygen = aluminium oxide
4Al(s) + 3O2(g) = 2Al2O3(s).
Combustion of any element is always an oxidation reaction... so this is one way that a metal ...
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