Chemistry of Phosphorus (Z=15)

Pea sized portions of potassium chlorate and red phosphorus are reacted together by striking with a hammer. Smoke, a loud bang and a flash are observed. Lab coat and goggles are recommended. The phosphorus sulfide is easily ignited, the potassium chlorate decomposes to give oxygen, which in turn causes the phosphorus sulfide to burn more vigorously. The head of safety matches are made of an oxidizing agent such as potassium chlorate, mixed with sulfur, fillers and glass powder. The side of the box contains red phosphorus, binder and powdered glass. The heat generated by friction when the match is struck causes a minute amount of red phosphorus to be converted to white phosphorus, which ignites spontaneously in air.


The production of matches in Hull began with the arrival of Ezra Butler Eddy, one of the most enterprising, inventive and gifted individuals of his generation. At the beginning, with the help of his wife, he barely managed to make ten cases of matches a day. The work was carried out in his house in the style of a cottage industry. There were 90 women 4 working for the match firm in and in Up to , the E.

Bake your matches for two hours or until the potassium chlorate paste hardens. Make a paste of white glue and red phosphorus in a new Pyrex or Kimex beaker,​.

A match is a tool for starting a fire. Typically, matches are made of small wooden sticks or stiff paper. One end is coated with a material that can be ignited by frictional heat generated by striking the match against a suitable surface. The coated end of a match, known as the match “head”, consists of a bead of active ingredients and binder ; often colored for easier inspection. There are two main types of matches: safety matches, which can be struck only against a specially prepared surface, and strike-anywhere matches, for which any suitably frictional surface can be used.

Historically, the term match referred to lengths of cord later cambric impregnated with chemicals, and allowed to burn continuously. The modern equivalent of this sort of match is the simple fuse , still used in pyrotechnics to obtain a controlled time delay before ignition. But, when friction matches became commonplace, they became the main object meant by the term.

A note in the text Cho Keng Lu , written in , describes a sulfur match, small sticks of pinewood impregnated with sulfur, used in China by “impoverished court ladies” in AD during the conquest of Northern Qi. If there occurs an emergency at night it may take some time to make a light to light a lamp.

How Do Safety Matches Work?

The London match-girls strike of was a strike of the women and teenage girls working at the Bryant and May Factory in Bow, London. The strike was sparked by the poor working conditions in the match factory, including fourteen-hour work days, poor pay, excessive fines, and the severe health complications of working with yellow or white phosphorus, such as phossy jaw.

Three weeks later, the factory owners agreed to rehire the strikers and end the fine system.

Throughout the nineteenth century the British match-making industry used white phosphorus in the production of lucifer matches, despite the knowledge taht the.

There are two types of matches: ones that are considered safe, and ones that can be ignited using any surface. The only difference is that in safety matches, the chemicals required to ignite them are kept separate from each other. But before we understand how they work, we must first ask — how did they come into being? Safety matches have come a long way from their antecedent, the Lucifer match.

According to an article in the Pacific Rural Press , the invention of the match is credited to Sir Isaac Holden, who capitalised on the need for instant fire at your fingertips. They were sold in metal tins, and came with a piece of sandpaper to light against. But there was one ingredient that made a vital difference: white phosphorus.

In the early nineteenth-century, however, Lucifer matches heavily relied on white phosphorus as one of the main ingredients in the match head. White phosphorus is a very combustible and toxic material. Its pyrophoric properties mean that it can spontaneously self-ignite.

Sustainable sewage sludge management fostering phosphorus recovery and energy efficiency

Gas chromatography-mass spectrometry determination of phosphine residues in stored products and processed foods. J Agric Food Chem 48 9 : Proton-induced X-ray emission analysis of munitions disposal residues. Walsh ME, Taylor S []. Analytical method for white phosphorus residues in munitions-contaminated sediments. Anal Chim Acta 1

Using white phosphorus for match heads meant that a flame could be produced with only the slightest heat from friction. It was seen as a huge.

Catherine Best does not work for, consult, own shares in or receive funding from any company or organisation that would benefit from this article, and has disclosed no relevant affiliations beyond their academic appointment. But these were the women who worked 14 hours a day in the East End of London and who were exposed to deadly phosphorous vapours on a daily basis. The effect literally causing the jaw bone to rot.

Doctors soon began treating these women for the disease — which would often spread to the brain leading to a particularly painful and horrific death, unless the jaw was removed. And even then a prolonged life was not guaranteed. But even though the risks were obvious, this was the Industrial Revolution — before employers were legally required to create safe working conditions. This meant that women on low wages continued to work long hours, while exposed to the toxic impact of white phosphorous and the devastating consequences this would have on their health.

Many of these women were working at Bryant and May which is unrelated to the current Bryant and May, which also makes matches and were Irish immigrants.

The Chemistry of Matches

Segui le ultime notizie e i progetti sulla Covid e la risposta della Commissione europea al coronavirus. Phosphorus is one essential element of life, which can neither be produced synthetically nor substituted by any other substance. Its importance as plant nutrient is emphasized by the huge amount of tons of phosphorus annually imported into Europe to sustain good harvests.

Technology concepts have been developed in recent European projects to tap into this local resource.

PHOSPHORUS: a task-based agent matchmaker PHOSPHORUS is an agent matchmaking service that exploits domain ontologies, description logic, and a.

Phossy jaw , formally known as phosphorus necrosis of the jaw , was an occupational disease affecting those who worked with white phosphorus also known as yellow phosphorus without proper safeguards. It was most commonly seen in workers in the matchstick industry in the 19th and early 20th centuries. Modern occupational hygiene practices have since eliminated the working conditions that caused this disease.

Those with phossy jaw would usually begin suffering painful toothaches and swelling of the gums. The pain was characterized as “persistent yet progressive Treatments included topical antimicrobials, conservative debridement of sequestra and surgery. The disease was extremely painful and disfiguring to the patient, with dying bone tissue rotting away accompanied by a foul-smelling discharge.

However, removal of the jaw bone had serious effects on patients’ ability to eat, leading to further health concerns including malnutrition. The clinical features appear first, pain in the teeth and jaw, abscesses, etc. Once the clinical changes occur, and the problem is made known, a doctor or dentist could see changes in the jaw bones through radiographs or x-rays.

The sequestra, the part or parts of the bone that dies and breaks off are light in terms of weight and yellow to brown in color. The phossy jaw can be clearly demarcated from similar entities by radiographs. In radiographs, the sequestra present as a typical worm-eaten appearance similar to a pumice stone. Sequestra appear osteoporotic and decalcified.

Friction Matches Were a Boon to Those Lighting Fires–Not So Much to Matchmakers

An email has been sent to Simply follow the link provided in the email to reset your password. If you can’t find the email please check your junk or spam folder and add no-reply rcseng. In the early 19th century, it was discovered that adding yellow now called white phosphorous to matchstick heads made them easier to ignite. It also led to a new industrial disease that lasted until roughly , when the production of phosphorous matches was outlawed by the International Berne Convention.

By , detailed medical reports of a disease involving the slow progression of exposed jaw bone started to appear.

Eddy Company decided to make use of phosphorus sesquisulphide But the rights to this chemical compound were controlled by an international match cartel​.

This site uses cookies from Google and other third parties to deliver its services, to personalise adverts and to analyse traffic. Information about your use of this site is shared with Google. By using this site, you agree to its use of cookies. Read our policy. When bonded to four oxygen atoms, phosphorus is a key part of living things. But when the oxygen atoms are stripped away we uncover an element with terrible powers. A normal diet provides around 5 g of phosphate per day and there is around g of phosphorus in the human body.

Most of it is in our bones as calcium phosphate, but more important are the organophosphates like DNA, adenosine triphosphate ATP , guanosine metaphosphate GMP, a messenger molecule , and the phospholipids that make up cell membranes.

Making a Perfect Match

There’s a lot of interesting chemistry going on in the small head of a safety match. Safety matches are ‘safe’ because they don’t undergo spontaneous combustion and because they don’t make people sick. You have to strike a safety match against a special surface in order to get it to ignite. In contrast, early matches relied on white phosphorus, which is unstable and likely to burst into flame in air. The other downside to using white phosphorus is its toxicity.

Before safety matches were invented, people became ill from chemical exposure.

Municipal wastewater represents a relevant phosphorus reserve and has the (​) is about to facilitate match making and.

When we think of the nineteenth century we tend to think of it as the age of steam — the age of the steam engine, steam-powered factories, and iron and steelworks. In order to produce this steam, an easy source of ignition was needed. Up until the nineteenth century, fires would be lit with a flint and steel which would be struck together to release sparks.

In the first half of the nineteenth century, however, the match was invented and its invention brought with it a new occupational disease. Sir Isaac Holden MP claimed to be the inventor, saying that he demonstrated them in a chemistry lecture he gave in London. The tip contained white phosphorus, sometimes also called yellow phosphorus, which worked by a chemical reaction whenever the tip was struck and allowed it to be lit when it was struck against anything.

White phosphorus, however, is highly toxic and produced a condition called phossy jaw or phosphorus necrosis of the jaw, a kind of bone cancer. These fumes caused the bones in the jaw — usually the lower jaw — to start to rot. Sufferers would begin by experiencing painful toothaches, the gums would swell, and the infected bone would glow a greenish-white colour in the dark.

Pus would start to form, causing tooth loss. Slowly the dead bone would separate from the living bone until the entire jaw bone had necrosed. The only treatment was to remove the infected jaw, leaving the patient seriously impaired.

How a Glendale match company went up in smoke following fire: Our Neighborhood, The Way it Was

In May , John T. Huner of Hancock Street in Brooklyn opened a match factory in what was then called Evergreen, located in present-day Glendale at the corner of Myrtle Avenue and Centre Avenue later called Charlotte Place and now called 60th Lane. The Our Darling match factory produced both wooden strike matches and paper safety matches.

Most phosphorus is used to make phosphoric acid of high purity necessary Small amounts of phosphorus sesquisulfide, P4S3, are used in the match industry.

A match is a small stick of wood or strip of cardboard with a solidified mixture of flammable chemicals deposited on one end. When that end is struck on a rough surface, the friction generates enough heat to ignite the chemicals and produce a small flame. Some matches, called strike-anywhere matches, may be ignited by striking them on any rough surface.

Other matches, called safety matches, will ignite only when they are struck on a special rough surface containing certain chemicals. The first known use of matches was in during the siege of a town in northern China. Women in the town used sticks coated with a mixture of chemicals to start fires for cooking and heating, thus allowing them to conserve their limited fuel by putting the fires out between uses.

The details of this technique were subsequently lost to history. It was not until that John Walker of England invented the first friction matches. Walker’s matches were ignited by drawing the heads through a folded piece of paper coated with ground glass. He began selling them in , but they were difficult to light and were not a success.


The infamous “phossy jaw” that created an epidemic of exposed bone osteonecrosis exclusively in the jaws began around and continued until , with only a few cases appearing since that time. In match-making factories, workers called “mixers,” “dippers,” and “boxers” were exposed to heated fumes containing this compound. Related to the duration of exposure, many of these workers developed painful exposed bone in the mouth, whereas their office-based counterparts did not.

modern match. Non-phosphorus fire. Between the years 17a great variety of chemical fire making devices made their appearance. These were.

Until the mids, lighting a fire was a painstaking and frustrating process. Tinder—shredded wood pulp, dried grass or wool—had to be ignited with sparks created by striking a coarse stone against steel then stoked with oxygen into a small flame until hot enough to light firewood. Matches were an improvement but often dangerous, because they were made with highly combustible yellow phosphorus. The safety match was invented by a Swedish professor in and is still in use today. You can make your own strike-anywhere matches, but exercise the utmost caution: the chemicals used to make them are extremely hazardous.

Cut your dowel rods into matchsticks by nicking with a small knife and snapping into 2- to 3-inch lengths. Mix a small amount of potassium chlorate with white glue in a Pyrex or Kimex beaker to create a thick paste.

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