Why is hydrogen flammable? Can hydrogen gas kill you?

Do you know that energies are so much limited, and they will once end up entirely from the world?

The same thing caused the invention of renewable energies!

Hydrogen is an excellent source of renewable energies, which are the only ones that can be conserved for the future. Hydrogen is the primary ingredient of water that is used to rotate turbines and produce electricity!

Hydrogen gas can also be used as fuel and for combustion that brings the question, Why is hydrogen flammable?

Hydrogen gases are natural burners. They don’t have any flashpoints as they can catch on fire in all temperatures above their boiling point of 20 k. They are also exceptional for the ability to burn at lower concentrations. Their periodic position makes them highly reactor to nearby elements.

Let’s explore in detail.

Also Read: Check out our other article about  What Makes An Oxygen Tank Explode?

is hydrogen explosive or flammable?

Why is hydrogen gas flammable

Hydrogen gas is one of the most all-time flammable substances that you can find in nature. But, when it comes to the flammability of hydrogen, it doesn’t mean that the element hydrogen itself is flammable. But, it is it’s a gaseous form consisting of two highly volatile atoms.

Some of the reasons that make hydrogen gas very flammable are as follows:

  • Hydrogen is volatile by nature and without any other external effects.
  • They can react very quickly with other near elements and be oxidized. This oxidized form is the cause of the burning of hydrogen.
  • Hydrogen carries out combustion reaction, which is another reason for it l’s extreme flammability.

Why is hydrogen so flammable, But helium is not?

Hydrogen and helium occupy two different positions in nature with other characteristics. They are periodic elements bearing unique features. Hydrogen is a group-1 element, whereas helium belongs to group-8. Hydrogen gas is very much flammable, whereas helium does not yield to any flame. The reasons for which are mention in a table:

Hydrogen Helium
Hydrogen is the very first element of the periodic table, which is very light and highly reactor with other features. This causes the hydrogen to be flammable.Helium falls under the group-8 part, which is an inert gas. Inert gases are already stabled. Their outermost shell is filled with 8 electrons that make them non-reactor with other factors.
They carry out combustion reaction, which is the prime reason for burning.They do not perform any response, which is their lack of tendency to ignite.
Hydrogen can be burned in really lower concentrations which is an exceptional feature.Helium cannot be burned in lower concentrations and require greater attention for ignition.

Is hydrogen spontaneously explosive?

Yes, hydrogen gas is so much spontaneous to flame and explosion. It does not need external or superficial support for catching on fire. It can be exposed to fire almost at all temperatures and without changing its natural state.

Some of the reasons that make hydrogen spontaneously explosive are as follows:

  • Hydrogen gas is so much lighter even comparing to the air. This is because it does not combine with the air, but it causes an immediate explosion.
  • If the temperature is even slightly increased, they catch on fire.
  • They ensure all the required elements that constitute a fire which causes them spontaneously with explosiveness.

Also Read: Is Nitrogen A Dangerous Gas?

Can hydrogen gas kill you?

Yes and no at the same time. Hydrogen gas will not kill you as it doesn’t have any direct harmful impact on us. But it can do severe damages and even lead to death for the course of many scenarios and time.

The effects of hydrogen on human beings are:

  • The presence of hydrogen gas in the air will not do any damages. But a lack of oxygen is the only reason for your death.
  • A lungful of hydrogen would not cause any trouble to you until the presence of oxygen is also hydrogen.
  • But, the presence of excess hydrogen displaces oxygen in the air that can lead to your death in many cases.

Can hydrogen spontaneously combust?

Hydrogen has exposure to spontaneous combustion for its nature. Hydrogen is explosive at all temperatures and without any external catalyst. The things making them spontaneously combust are:

  • Burning in really lower concentrations make them unique from other element and causes spontaneous burning.
  • They operate combustion reactions in the presence of oxygen, causing them to combust.
  • They do not depend on any specific flashpoint for catching on fire. So, almost every time, they see it on fire very quickly without the interference of anything else.

hydrogen vs water – which is more flammable?

Hydrogen and water carry opposite nature instead of being tied within the same structure. So, it makes hydrogen to be flammable but water not. There is the presence of hydrogen in the form and bonding of the water. The hydrogen itself comprises the water through reacting with oxygen but changes its behavior while doing so.

Some of the causes that make hydrogen flammable but water not are:

  • The reaction of two moles of hydrogen with a single mole of oxygen makes a new compound called water with different properties.
  • Hydrogen bears the natural tendency to catch on fire. But water does not yield to the fire.
  • Water is used to mitigate fire, but hydrogen is used as the fuel for the fire.

Why is hydrogen so flammable?

Hydrogen gas is highly reacted with flames for several reasons. First, the structural formula and molecular bonding of the hydrogen are such that they are incredibly light reactors and combustible to fire. The reasons for the flammability of hydrogen are:

Hydrogen doesn’t need any flashpoint to burn and ignite. Any temperature becomes the flashpoint for hydrogen as it is burned at all temperatures.

A high concentration is needed to carry out any combustion reaction and causing a fire. But in the case of hydrogen, it becomes exceptional.

They can burn in lower concentrations and without the help of any catalyst to conduct fire.

Why Is Hydrogen Flammable 1

Can fire burn underwater?

Yes, if provided with enough fuel, fire can even burn underwater. Water is a great source to get rid of fire, but fire can be ignited under this water with some intensive flammable elements. This includes the combination of hydrogen with oxygen and heat that can yield in fire underwater.

When all the three essential constituents of fire are ensured inside the water, fire is also forced to burn.

A perfect recipe for fire is completed with the presence of oxygen, heat, and fuel. Oxygen increase the rate of combustion, energy provides the frame for the fire to burn, and heat makes the fire started.

Fire burns underwater when the rate of combustion is more than mitigation.

Is pure hydrogen toxic?

No, hydrogen doesn’t show any toxic behavior. They remain in an environment-friendly condition and don’t pollute the surroundings by any means. The behavior of pure hydrogen in the background are:

  • The presence of hydrogen in the air makes it breathable for the human lungs. So hydrogen is not toxic by any means.
  • Hydrogen does not cause any circumstance for the air to get polluted, thus having no harmful impact on nature.
  • Hydrogen only tends to displace oxygen when it remained in really high concentrations. So, it can cause hypoxia, without which it doesn’t have any other harmful effects.


Hydrogen remains in the form of gas in the environment. The pure state of this gas is conductors of fire and used in making flames. They are lighter than the air and do not react the same, as it implies immediate explosion.

The reason for the flammability of hydrogen is its periodic position. The thing which increases its rate of reaction, combustion and makes it highly oxidizable elements!


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