General Question

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

Aside from coal,oil and natural gas,what organic material burns the hottest?

Asked by lucillelucillelucille (27545points) October 13th, 2010

I cannot use my pyrometer to measure the temperature as it is stationary. Plant life,manure,wood,anything organic.Which plants burn hotter than others?Where can I find this out?Is there a chart of these things?

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13 Answers

Cruiser's avatar

Magnesium makes incredible fires and AFAIKT burns pretty hot. Do not stare at burning magnesium and once you light it almost impossible to put out. We set a mag wheel on fire one time and it burned like hell and destroyed the concrete it was on.

tedd's avatar

You could make some thermite it burns at about 6000 degrees F.

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

@Cruiser -I do not want to make Greek fire or poison myself as I am well aware of what magnesium
can do.I wouldn’t mind knowing what plants are high in magnesium.Smaller scale,know what I mean????Do you know of a chart that lists these things?

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

@tedd-I was thinking more along the lines of 1500 F using readily available materials.Is this possible? ;)

Cruiser's avatar

@lucillelucillelucille Just use small teeny flares!! Brandon here says Bear Mountain pellets burn the hottest!

From what my brother has told me you can get those temps with real coal fired furnaces but you will need a bellows or blower fan or a blow hard to get those higher temps you are looking for! ;)

grumpyfish's avatar

@lucillelucillelucille Check out Manzanita wood—it burns hot enough to melt steel.

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

@Cruiser-Wood pellets are an option
@grumpyfish-Unfortunately,they are a species native to the Western areas of the US.I’m on the other side :(

grumpyfish's avatar

@lucillelucillelucille That’s unfortuneate. Any dense hardwood will burn hot—try some oak or rock maple (you can pick up small sticks at Woodcrafters if there’s one nearby)

Cruiser's avatar

@lucillelucillelucille I found this site archaic to navigate but fascinating none the less.

http://www.romanglassmakers.co.uk/furnace4.htm

Found this from your fav source…
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heat_of_combustion#Heat_of_combustion_tables

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

@grumpyfish-That’s what I’m talkin’ about! I do have alot of oak scraps and can easily get branches where I live.A friend swears by grapevines too—and horse shit—XD She says the vines burn hot.I wonder if there is an actual chart of this?
@I have seen kilns similar to this and I would try this in a heartbeat!

grumpyfish's avatar

@lucillelucillelucille I’m sure someone has a chart of this, BUT you could make your own since you have the instrumentation.

If you had a moisture meter, that’d be another data point. From the little I was reading trying to find the actual burning temp of Manzanita, it sounds like the dryer the wood the hotter it burns (of course). So kiln dried hardwood lumber would burn much hotter than green branches, BUT that would be an interesting things to measure.

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

@grumpyfish -My pyrometer is attached to the kiln so I can’t use it to experiment with burns.However,I do think they make a lower cost laser one.They would be great experiments,but I am searching for a quick reference as I am pressed for time. I’d like to get a firing in before it gets too cold as I am concerned about thermal shock to my pots.(pit-fired pottery)Kinda like the McDonald’s way of getting info XD

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