Chemical elements
    Physical Properties
    Chemical Properties
    Amorphous Carbon
      Lampblack and Soot
      Retort Carbon
      Animal Charcoal
      Physical Properties
      Chemical Properties
      Fusion and Vaporisation

Retort Carbon

Gas Carbon or Retort Carbon is formed as a lining on the upper parts of the retorts in which coal is heated in the manufacture of coal-gas. It owes its origin to the thermal dissociation of the hydrocarbon vapours evolved from the coal; and the process may be copied by passing ethylene (C2H4) through a red-hot porcelain tube, when gas carbon is formed. It contains little or no hydrogen and about 3 per cent, of ash; it is therefore a moderately pure form of amorphous carbon. Gas carbon is grey in colour and very hard; it approaches graphite in its density, which is over 2.0, and it is a good conductor of heat and electricity. On this account it is used, when ground together with charcoal and graphite, for making electric-light carbons and the carbon plates or rods of Bunsen batteries.

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