Magnesium reacts with oxygen gas to produce magnesium oxide, light, and heat. What type of reaction is this?

Dec 18, 2016

Combustion (also oxidation-reduction)

Explanation:

Maybe we want to try to imagine the chemical system, which could look like this:

$2 M g \left(s\right) + {O}_{2} \left(g\right) \implies 2 M g O \left(s\right)$

Remember that combustion reactions occur when a species reacts with ${O}_{2}$, oxygen gas to release heat and produce a flame.

These reactions are also oxidation-reduction reactions, but are by no means the only type of oxidation-reduction reaction which can occur.

Here is a short video which shows what this reaction looks like.