Ever wondered how life would be if we could just strike a matchstick on any surface?
Matches make an important part of our everyday lives. We use it every single day to light a lamp, light the stove or light a cigarette. The matches that we use every day are called Safety Matches. These matches are safe to use. They only ignite when rubbed against a special surface. Some of the matches we encounter daily are wax matchsticks, wooden matchsticks, cardboard matchsticks and many others.
In case of safety matches, the match head contains potassium chlorate and the red, rough surface called the striking surface contains red phosphorus. Matches are a combination of an oxidising agent and reducing agent. When an oxidizing agent and a reducing agent are mixed, they react violently and exothermically producing enough heat to ignite the match stick. When a safety match is struck against the rough surface, the friction between the two creates enough heat to start the reaction between the chlorate and potassium. This way, the matchstick catches fire and continues to burn. The red phosphorous is an amorphous form of phosphorous and is much safer than the crystalline white/yellow phosphorous that was originally used in matches’ before1913.
Back then, another special type of match called #StrikeAnywhereMatches were invented. These matches were made for survival situations.
As the name implies, these matches ignite when struck against any rough surface. They light up when struck against any abrasive surface. You can strike it against sandpaper, brick, the bottom of a shoe, a rough belt buckle or literally anything and they will ignite. These matches are ideal during survival situations.
In case of strike anywhere matches, the match head contains both the potassium chlorate and phosphorous in the form of phosphorous sulphide, a compound containing four phosphorous and three sulphur atoms. When the matches are struck against any rough surface, the friction generates heat initiating a reaction between the chlorate and the phosphorous.
Strike Any where Matches is a clever blend of ingredients and science.