We use cookies to give you the best experience possible. By continuing we’ll assume you’re on board with our cookie policy

Carbon Monoxide Essay Sample

The whole doc is available only for registered users OPEN DOC
  • Pages:
  • Word count: 762
  • Category: carbon

Get Full Essay

Get access to this section to get all help you need with your essay and educational issues.

Get Access

Carbon Monoxide Essay Sample

Carbon monoxide is a colorless, odorless, tasteless and toxic gas produced as a by-product of combustion. Any fuel burning appliance, vehicle, tool or other device has the potential to produce dangerous levels of carbon monoxide gas. Examples of carbon monoxide producing devices commonly in use around the home include:

• Fuel fired furnaces (non-electric)
• Gas water heaters
• Fireplaces and woodstoves
• Gas stoves
• Gas dryers
• Charcoal grills
• Lawnmowers, snowblowers and other yard equipment
• Automobiles

Medical Effects of Carbon Monoxide

Carbon monoxide inhibits the blood’s ability to carry oxygen to body tissues including vital organs such as the heart and brain. When CO is inhaled, it combines with the oxygen carrying hemoglobin of the blood to form carboxyhemoglobin (COHb). Once combined with the hemoglobin, that hemoglobin is no longer available for transporting oxygen.

How quickly the carboxyhemoglobin builds up is a factor of the concentration of the gas being inhaled (measured in parts per million or PPM) and the duration of the exposure. Compounding the effects of the exposure is the long half-life of carboxyhemoglobin in the blood. Half-life is a measure of how quickly levels return to normal. The half-life of carboxyhemoglobin is approximately 5 hours. This means that for a given exposure level, it will take about 5 hours for the level of carboxyhemoglobin in the blood to drop to half its current level after the exposure is terminated.

Symptoms Associated With a Given Concentration of COHb

• 10% COHb – No symptoms. Heavy smokers can have as much as 9% COHb. • 15% COHb – Mild headache.
• 25% COHb – Nausea and serious headache. Fairly quick recovery after treatment with oxygen and/or fresh air. • 30% COHb – Symptoms intensify. Potential for long term effects especially in the case of infants, children, the elderly, victims of heart disease and pregnant women. • 45% COHb – Unconsciousness

• 50+% COHb – Death

Since one can’t easily measure COHb levels outside of a medical environment, CO toxicity levels are usually expressed in airborne concentration levels (PPM) and duration of exposure. Expressed in this way, symptoms of exposure can be stated as in the Symptoms Associated With a Given Concentration of CO Over Time table below.

As can be seen from the table, the symptoms vary widely based on exposure level, duration and the general health and age on an individual. Also note the one recurrent theme that is most significant in the recognition of carbon monoxide poisoning- headache, dizziness and nausea. These ‘flu like’ symptoms are often mistaken for a real case of the flu and can result in delayed or misdiagnosed treatment. When experienced in conjunction with a the sounding of a carbon monoxide these symptoms are the best indicator that a potentially serious buildup of carbon monoxide exists.

Symptoms Associated With a Given Concentration of CO Over Time

|PPM CO |Time |Symptoms | |35 |8 hours |Maximum exposure allowed by OSHA in the workplace over an eight hour period. | |200 |2-3 hours |Mild headache, fatigue, nausea and dizziness. | |400 |1-2 hours |Serious headache-other symptoms intensify. Life threatening after 3 hours. | |800 |45 minutes |Dizziness, nausea and convulsions. Unconscious within 2 hours. Death within 2-3 hours. | |1600 |20 minutes |Headache, dizziness and nausea. Death within 1 hour. | |3200 |5-10 minutes |Headache, dizziness and nausea. Death within 1 hour. | |6400 |1-2 minutes |Headache, dizziness and nausea. Death within 25-30 minutes. | |12,800 |1-3 minutes |Death |

Health Effect of Carbon Monoxide

Carbon monoxide is a odorless, tasteless, colorless and toxic gas. Carbon monoxide is produced as a by-product of combustion. Any combustion process, fuel burning appliance, vehicle or other device has the potential to produce carbon monoxide gas. Carbon monoxide is dangerous because it inhibits the blood’s ability to carry oxygen to vital organs such as the heart and brain. Inhaled CO combines with the oxygen carrying hemoglobin of the blood and forms carboxyhemoglobin (COHb) which is unusable for transporting oxygen. Health effects of various concentration of carbon monoxide:

1) ppm – parts per million – is defined as the mass of the component in solution divided by the total mass of the solution multiplied by 106 (one million) 2) The maximum exposure allowed by OSHA in the workplace over an eight hour period is 35 ppm. 3) Typical sickness symptoms are mild headache, fatigue, nausea and dizziness. 4) A CO concentration of 12-13.000 ppm is deadly after 1-3 minutes. A CO concentration of 1600 ppm is deadly after one hour.

We can write a custom essay

According to Your Specific Requirements

Order an essay

You May Also Find These Documents Helpful

Investigation Of Factors That Affect Carbon Dioxide...

Research Questions: 1. What is the optimal temperature for yeast to metabolize sugars? 2. What is the sugar that is most readily metabolized by yeast? Are there any sugars that yeast cannot metabolize? 3. What is the optimal concentration of sugar (in 60 mL of water) for yeast? Results: The amount of carbon dioxide (CO2) produced by yeast in various conditions (independent variables: temperature, sugar...

Which 6 Carbon Sugar Would be Most...

Introduction Many yeasts are anaerobic organisms or can survive in oxygen - absent environments during which time they ''switch'' to a process called anaerobic respiration for the purpose of producing food by breaking down carbohydrates. The final products of the anaerobic respiration are nutrients, ethanol and carbon - dioxyde. Whats more, different types of carbohydrates release various amounts of energy during fermentation. The amount of...

The Impact of External Factors: Water and...

1. Research question Due to the fact that most plants have no appropriate apparatus to ingest and digest food, they have to obtain it by themselves using simple ingredients. That is why plants are called autotrophs or simply "self - feeders". The process of converting carbon dioxide taken from air and water from the soil into complex substances like glucose, is called photosynthesis and can...

Low Carbon Steel Compared to Nylon

To make a circuit board clamp 2 main modern materials are used, these are: * Low carbon steel * Nylon These two materials have many different properties and design issues and in this essay I am going to be looking at what they are and why that certain material has been used. First I'm going to look at the different properties of Low Carbon Steel....

Supporting the Growth of Yeast Cultures with...

Aim:To investigate the difference in growth rates between yeast cultures that have been grown in different carbon sources. Introduction: An investigation in being carried out to see whether the support of different carbon sources have an adverse effect on the growth rate of yeast cultures. Carbon sources are used to provide carbon as a macronutrient to micro-organisms to enable them to grow and reproduce rapidly....

Get Access To The Full Essay
Materials Daily
100,000+ Subjects
2000+ Topics
Free Plagiarism
All Materials
are Cataloged Well

Sorry, but copying text is forbidden on this website. If you need this or any other sample, we can send it to you via email.

By clicking "SEND", you agree to our terms of service and privacy policy. We'll occasionally send you account related and promo emails.
Sorry, but only registered users have full access

How about getting this access

Become a member

Your Answer Is Very Helpful For Us
Thank You A Lot!


Emma Taylor


Hi there!
Would you like to get such a paper?
How about getting a customized one?

Couldn't Find What You Looking For?

Get access to our huge knowledge base which is continuously updated

Next Update Will Be About:
14 : 59 : 59
Become a Member