Simplest alkyne, CH. A colourless, flammable, explosive gas, it is used as a fuel in welding and cutting metals and as a raw material for many organic compounds and plastics. It is produced by reaction of water with calcium carbide, passage of a hydrocarbon through an electric arc, or partial combustion of methane. Decomposing it liberates heat; depending on degree of purity, it is also an explosive. An acetylene torch reaches about 6,000 °F (3,300 °C), hotter than combustion of any other known gas mixture. See also hydrocarbon.
Variants of ACETYLENE
acetylene or ethyne
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise.
For the full entry on acetylene, visit Britannica.com.
Seen & Heard
What made you look up acetylene? Please tell us what you were reading, watching or discussing that led you here.