Fire Behavior and Combustion

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Unit 1 Assignment: Critical Terms Study Guide

FS101: Fire Behavior and Combustion

Unit 1

Unit 1 Assignment: Critical Terms Study Guide

Auto-ignition temperature The minimum temperature to which a material must be raised before combustion will occur. Also called “ignition temperature.”

Backdraft A sudden, violent reignition of the contents of a closed container fire that has consumed the oxygen within the space when a new source of oxygen is introduced. The introduction of oxygen results in an immediate smoke explosion.

Boiling point (BP) The temperature where a liquid will convert to a gas at a vapor pressure equal to or greater than atmospheric pressure.

British thermal unit (BTU) The amount of heat
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The HRR can be viewed as the engine driving the fire.

Incipient (ignition) stage The point at which the four components of the fire tetrahedron

Latent heat of vaporization The heat that is absorbed when one gram of liquid is transformed into vapor at the boiling point under one atmosphere of pressure and the result is expressed in BTUs per pound or calories per gram.

Pyrolysis The process of breaking down a solid fuel into gaseous components when heated; also called thermal decomposition.

Radiation The combined process of emission, transmission, and absorption of heat energy traveling through electromagnetic waves from an area of higher heat energy to an area of lower heat energy. A good example is the transfer of solar heat from the sun to the earth. The heat energy is moved through waves from an area of higher temperature (sun) to an area of lower temperature (earth).

Saponification The process of chemically converting the fatty acid contained in the cooking medium to soap or foam.

Smoldering (glowing) combustion The absence of flames with the presence of hot materials in the surface where oxygen diffuses into the surface of the fuel.

Specific gravity The density of the product divided by the density of water, with water defined as 1.0 at a certain temperature.

Spontaneous combustion An occurrence where a material self-heats to its piloted ignition temperature, then ignites.

Temperature Temperature is a measure of the internal energy of
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