what is thermal runaway reaction?

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hi could you please give me the answer and if possible the web address

thanks

Posted Fri 13th July, 2012 @ 09:19 by Taniya
Edited by Taniya on Fri 13th July, 2012 @ 09:23

1 Answer

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Hope this helps

Thermal runaway

An exothermic reaction can lead to thermal runaway, which begins when the heat produced by the reaction exceeds the heat removed. The surplus heat raises the temperature of the reaction mass, which causes the rate of reaction to increase. This in turn accelerates the rate of heat production. An approximate rule of thumb suggests that reaction rate - and hence the rate of heat generation - doubles with every 10°C rise in temperature.

Thermal runaway can occur because, as the temperature increases, the rate at which heat is removed increases linearly but the rate at which heat is produced increases exponentially. Once control of the reaction is lost, temperature can rise rapidly leaving little time for correction. The reaction vessel may be at risk from over-pressurisation due to violent boiling or rapid gas generation. The elevated temperatures may initiate secondary, more hazardous runaways or decompositions.

http://www.hse.gov.uk/pubns/indg254.htm

Answered Sun 7th October, 2012 @ 17:50 by Yasmin