Ember

Ember
Embers of coal
A bonfire in rural Australia, with a large number of embers being blown by the wind.

Embers are the glowing, hot coals made of greatly heated wood, coal, or other carbon-based material that remain after, or sometimes precede a fire. Embers can glow very hot, sometimes as hot as the fire which created them. They radiate a substantial amount of heat long after the fire has been extinguished, and if not taken care of properly can rekindle a fire that is thought to be completely extinguished and can pose a fire hazard. In order to avoid the danger of accidentally spreading a fire, many campers pour water on the embers or cover them in dirt.

They are often used for cooking, such as in charcoal barbecues. This is because embers radiate a more constant form of heat, as opposed to an open fire which is constantly changing along with the heat it radiates.

An ember is usually formed when a fire has only partially burnt a piece of fuel, and there is still usable chemical energy in that piece of fuel. Often this happens because the usable chemical energy is so deep into the center that air (chemically O2) does not reach it, therefore not causing combustion (carbon-based fuel + O2 → CO2 + H2O + C + other chemicals involved). The reason that it continues to stay hot and does not lose its thermal energy quickly is because combustion is still happening at a miniature scale. The small yellow, orange and red lights often seen among the embers are actually combustion. There just is not enough combustion happening at one time to create a flame. By the time embers are completely 'burned through', almost all of it is pure carbon will have loose physical bonds, which is why they crumble with the slightest touch. At that point they are normally called ashes.

Embers play a large role in forest fires. Since embers are typically burnt leaves and thus small and light, they can be blown away by the wind. During a large fire, with the right wind conditions, embers can be blown far ahead of the fire front, starting spot fires hundreds of metres away. One of the initial stages of defending against a bushfire is dubbed the "ember attack", in which embers will bombard the house, starting small fires in wooden structures.[1]

References

See also

  • Spark, an airborne ember

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Игры ⚽ Нужно решить контрольную?

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Ember — Em ber, a. [OE. ymber, AS. ymbren, ymbryne, prop., running around, circuit; ymbe around + ryne a running, fr. rinnan to run. See {Amb }, and {Run}.] Making a circuit of the year of the seasons; recurring in each quarter of the year; as, ember… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Ember — Em ber, n. [OE. emmeres, emeres, AS. ?myrie; akin to Icel. eimyrja, Dan. emmer, MHG. eimere; cf. Icel. eimr vapor, smoke.] A lighted coal, smoldering amid ashes; used chiefly in the plural, to signify mingled coals and ashes; the smoldering… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • ember — O.E. æmerge ember, merged with or influenced by O.N. eimyrja, both from P.Gmc. *aim uzjon ashes (Cf. M.L.G. emere, O.H.G. eimuria, Ger. Ammern), a compound from *aima ashes (from PIE root *ai to burn; see EDIFICE (Cf …   Etymology dictionary

  • ember — ► NOUN ▪ a small piece of burning wood or coal in a dying fire. ORIGIN Old English …   English terms dictionary

  • ember — ember1 [em′bər] n. [ME eymere & (with intrusive b) eymbre < OE æmerge (& ON eimyrja) < æm (akin to ON eimr, steam) + yrge (akin to ON ysja, fire) < IE base * eus , to burn > L urere, to burn] 1. a glowing piece of coal, wood, etc.… …   English World dictionary

  • Ember — Vermutliches Wappen Johann Embers an der Südfront der Liberei („Ember“ bedeutet Zuber oder Eimer).[1] Johann Ember (* um 1365 vermutlich in Hannover …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • ember — [OE] Ember goes back to a prehistoric Germanic *aimuzjōn, although it is possible that the modern English word represents a borrowing from the related Old Norse eimyrja rather than a direct line of descent from Old English ǣmyrge. The ember of… …   The Hutchinson dictionary of word origins

  • ember — [OE] Ember goes back to a prehistoric Germanic *aimuzjōn, although it is possible that the modern English word represents a borrowing from the related Old Norse eimyrja rather than a direct line of descent from Old English ǣmyrge. The ember of… …   Word origins

  • ember — UK [ˈembə(r)] / US [ˈembər] noun Word forms ember : singular ember plural embers 1) [countable] a piece of wood or coal that is still hot and red after a fire has stopped burning 2) embers [plural] the last moments or parts of something the… …   English dictionary

  • ember — /em beuhr/, n. 1. a small live piece of coal, wood, etc., as in a dying fire. 2. embers, the smoldering remains of a fire. [bef. 1000; ME eemer, emeri, OE aemerge, aemyrie (c. ON eimyrja, OHG eimuria), equiv. to aem (c. ON eimr steam) + erge,… …   Universalium

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”