Complete Combustion of Alkanes & Alkenes

Specification Point 9.16C:
  • Describe how the complete combustion of alkanes and alkenes involves the oxidation of hydrocarbons to produce carbon dioxide and water
  • Alkanes and alkenes undergo complete and incomplete combustion.
  • Complete combustion occurs when there is excess oxygen so water and carbon dioxide are formed.
  • For example ethane and ethene both react with oxygen in combustion reactions:

CH4+ 2O2→ CO2+ 2H2O

C2H4+ 3O2→ 2CO2+ 2H2O

  • The hydrocarbons become oxidised and energy is released in the process.

Edexcel GCSE Chemistry Notes

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Morgan Curtin Chemistry

Author: Morgan

Morgan’s passion for the Periodic Table begun on his 10th birthday when he received his first Chemistry set. After studying the subject at university he went on to become a fully fledged Chemistry teacher, and now works in an international school in Madrid! In his spare time he helps create our fantastic resources to help you ace your exams.