The thermite process

The thermite process
The thermite process

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Experiment C5.1.2.2 demonstrates the principle of the thermite process. In engineering, the thermite process is used to weld railway tracks together. A mixture of aluminium grit and iron(II, III) oxide is added to the apparatus and lit with an ignition rod. Liquid iron and aluminium oxide form in a very exothermic reaction. The iron has a higher density than aluminium oxide and so it sinks down in the melt.

Because aluminium releases immense quantities of energy in the reaction with oxygen, the reaction needs only to be started with an igniter. The energy released drives the rest of the process, and along with that it also liquefies the resulting iron.

Components of equipment sets

1 661540  8  Thermite experiment LD
GHS00 This product contains dangerous substances!
1 6750440  4  Thermite igniting sticks LD
GHS07 Warning H302 H332
1 666714  8  Cartridge burner, DIN type LD
GHS02 Warning H220
1 666731  4  Gas igniter, mechanical LD
1 667035 Crucible tongs 200 mm LD
1 604222  4  Measuring scoop, PP, 50 ml LD
1 51015  4  Magnet with bore LD
1 667104  8  * Cover plate, 50 cm x 50 cm LD
1 667614  4  * Heat protective gloves LD
Additionally required: hammer, aluminium foil

Articles marked with * are not essential, we do however recommend them to carry out the experiment.

Experiment Instructions

PDF (Experiment description) PDF (Experiment description) C5.1.2.2 The thermite process
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