Catalytic heaters produce heat through flameless chemical reactions. Many space heaters are catalytic. Soldering irons and disposable chemical heat packs are also catalytic heaters. They produce heat gradually, which is a significant advantage over combustion heaters in applications requiring controlled, predictable heating.Continue Reading
According to Brad Painting of DexKnows Home Improvement, simple catalytic heaters consist of a fuel tank, a metal grate and a mesh plated with a catalyst such as platinum. As the fuel passes from the tank through the mesh, it undergoes a chemical reaction and produces heat. The metal grate absorbs the heat and radiates it out into the surrounding space, often assisted by a small fan.
Catalytic heaters have several potential power sources. The most common include alcohol, propane, lighter fluid and butane. Some catalytic heaters are safe for indoor use during power outages. However, fire safety laws restrict the type and size of the fuel tank permitted for these applications. Mr. Heater explains that in the event of a fire, failure to abide by these guidelines renders the house ineligible for fire department intervention due to the risk of a fuel tank explosion, regardless of the source of the fire.
Catalytic heaters need fresh air to function safely. The chemical reaction between the fuel and the catalyst requires plenty of oxygen. RV expert Curtis Carver frequently uses catalytic heaters while traveling and advises others to reduce the risk of suffocation by ensuring that the heater has a steady supply of fresh oxygen.Learn more about Thermodynamics
According to About.com expert Timothy Thiele, oil heaters are electric appliances that warm the surrounding air by passing hot oil through a series of metal tubes. Oil is the ideal filling for space heaters because it heats quickly and gets extremely hot without boiling. As the heater runs, the hot oil heats its metal tubing, which has poor heat retention and quickly releases the heat into the air.Full Answer >
An air cooling system works by using a chemical, known as a coolant, which easily converts from liquid to gas and can transfer heat from inside a building to outside. These systems are commonly found in air conditioners and refrigerators.Full Answer >
Most automotive oil coolers pass heated oil through a radiator-type device equipped with a fan that forces air through coils to dissipate heat, explains About.com. Some systems prevent oil overheating by constantly forcing water or liquid coolant through a maze of tubes. Viscosity is drastically reduced in overheated oil, reducing lubricating efficiency and engine performance.Full Answer >
Endothermic reactions are chemical reactions which absorb energy from the environment. The products of the reaction store the energy absorbed in the form of chemical bonds, according to Reference.com.Full Answer >