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Matches

September 27, 2012 by  


tufailA match is a tool for starting a fire under controlled conditions. A typical modern match is made of a small wooden stick or stiff paper. One end is coated with a material that can be ignited by frictional heat generated by striking the match against a suitable surface. Matches are usually sold in quantity; wooden ones are packaged in boxes, and paper matches are clustered in rows stapled into matchbooks. They are commonly sold by tobacconists and many other kinds of shops. The coated end of a match, known as the match “head,” contains either phosphorus or phosphorus sesquisulfide as the active ingredient and gelatin as a binder. There are two main types of matches: safety matches, which can be struck only against a specially prepared surface, and strike-anywhere matches, for which any suitably frictional surface can be used. Some match-like compositions, known as electric matches, are ignited electrically and do not make use of heat from friction.

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