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If I have a pile full of fuel (gasoline) - and I also have heated iron ( very very hot - color orange) and I put the Iron in the pile ,

Would the gasoline will burn ?

I mean - does gasoline need heat or actual fire in order to burn ?

nb - I can't test it since I don't have the means to do it.

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up vote 1 down vote accepted

I don't know what a "pile" of fuel is. I assume you mean a container full of it.

Gasoline needs oxygen to burn, and it needs the correct mixture. Too little oxygen and burning is impossible. Too much oxygen causes the same problem. To achieve ignition with Gasoline, you need between 1.4 and 7.6% petrol vapour (by volume) in the air. Ouside this range burning will not start.

If these conditions are met, as the flash point of gasoline (the minimum temperature at which it will burn) is $-40C$, your red-hot poker will do the job. In fact, gasoline and air will self-ignite at around $250C$. For more details, start with the Wikipedia article on the Flammability limit.

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Yes I meant a "tub"/container :-) – Royi Namir Mar 30 '14 at 10:40
And I'd add that, if you could put the red-hot iron in the petrol without the presence of any oxygen (for example, in a pure nitrogen atmosphere), it would not burn, but some or all of it would boil. – hdhondt Apr 5 '14 at 9:38
Thanks :-)......... – Royi Namir Apr 5 '14 at 9:39
so , If you pull a grenade in Space, what happens ? – Royi Namir Apr 5 '14 at 9:46
A grenade (and explosives in general) does not need external oxygen to explode, so it will work just as well in vacuum. In fact, it will work even better, as there is no air to slow down the fragments. – hdhondt Apr 6 '14 at 11:20

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