Cool Science - 1/27/13: Limonene

By Emma Koch - 21Alive

January 27, 2014 Updated Jan 22, 2014 at 12:48 PM EDT

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (21Alive) -- In this week's episode of Cool Science Monday, Martin Fisher from Science Central will talk about a chemical in the rinds of citrus fruit, called limonene.

It’s very aromatic, giving oranges/lemons/limes/etc that distinct citrus smell. Limonene is a type of hydrocarbon, a molecule composed of Carbon, Hydrogen and Oxygen atoms. Limonene is an oil, and is therefore flammable.

By squeezing a small piece of orange rind towards a candle flame, we were able to see a small, brief flash of fire as the oil ignited.

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