Man's physical universe


Carbon Monoxide Is a Dangerous Poison.


Carbon monoxide, CO, is produced when carbon and other fuels

are burned in a hmited supply of air. Inasmuch as it represents only

a partial oxidation of carbon, it is readily oxidized to carbon dioxide

and thus serves as a fuel gas.

Carbon monoxide combines with the red blood corpuscles, thus

rendering the blood incapable of serving as a carrier of oxygen.

containing as little as 1.5 parts of carbon monoxide to 1000 parts of

air may be fatal if breathed for some time.

Carbon monoxide is odorless and thus fails to warn of its presence.

It is likely to be produced in any stove, furnace, or combustion engine.

A small automobile may produce enough carbon monoxide in a

closed garage within three minutes to kill a man. Sometimes carbon

monoxide leaks from defective exhausts into closed cars and is thus

responsible for an unknown number of accidents.


Protection against

carbon monoxide poisoning requires that all exhaust gases be carried

away through adequate flues, chimneys, and exhausts. Flues and

chimneys should be checked occasionally to make sure that they are

not stopped up with soot.

Fire-making Is No Longer the Difficult Problem That It Once Was.

One of the earliest matches was made in 1805 by Chancel, of Paris,

who dipped sticks of wood in sulfur and tipped them with a mixture of

potassium chlorate, sugar, and gum. This match was ignited by dipping

the tip into a "fire bottle" containing asbestos saturated with

concentrated sulfuric acid.

About 1827 John Walker, an English apothecary, invented a match

with a tip composed of potassium chlorate and antimony sulfide, which

was ignited by drawing it between folds of paper coated with powdered

glass. This match, known as the lucifer, or friction, light, was the first

friction match.

In 1852 the first Swedish safety match using red phosphorus was

manufactured. Red phosphorus is an allotropic form {a physically

distinct form of an element with different energy content) of phosphorus

which is much less active than white phosphorus and is nonpoisonous.

The red phosphorus is mixed with antimony sulfide and powdered glass

and placed on the match box. The match tip consists of a mixture of

antimony sulfide and some oxidizing agent such as potassium chlorate,

KCIO3, red lead oxide, Pb304, or potassium dichromate, K2Cr207.

These matches can be ignited only by striking them on the prepared

surface on the match box.

Modern matches are soaked in a solution of alum, sodium phosphate,

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