Thermal reaction [Examples]


Thermal reaction

A thermal reaction is a kind  of chemical reaction that happen as a consequence of an increase in temperature. The rise of temperature cause increase to kinetic energy of the particles resulted in higher number of collision which can lead to a thermal reaction.

Examples of Thermal reaction

Thermal reaction has many examples some of these is given below :

  1. Combustion reactions:
  2. Polymerization reactions:
  3. Decomposition reactions:

1. Combustion reactions:

Combustion reactions,include the burning of a fuel in  company of oxygen. Examples

  • Involve the combustion of gasoline in an automobile engine
  • or the burning of methane for heating and cooking.

2. Polymerization reactions:

Polymerization reactions  include  the addition of monomers to form polymers. For example,

  • the production of polyethylene from ethylene monomers is a thermal polymerization reaction.

3. Decomposition reactions:

Some chemical compounds decompose when heated,and a reaction is called decomposition reaction. For example,

In formation of cement,calcium carbonate decays into calcium oxide and carbon dioxide on giving heat.

Difference between thermal and photochemical reaction

Thermal reaction

Photochemical reaction

1.      Thermal reactions are driven by heat energy.


Photochemical reactions are driven by light energy.
Thermal reactions usually occur at higher temperatures. Photochemical reactions typically occur at low temperatures.
Thermal reaction usually need  a higher activation energy. Photochemical reactions usually have a lower activation energy.
Thermal reaction most oftenly  occur at slower rate. Photochemical reactions usually occur at a much faster rate.
2.      Thermal reactions typically involve stable reactants.


Photochemical reactions often involve highly reactive and unstable species such as free radicals and excited states.
3.      Thermal reactions typically produce products that are thermodynamically favored.


Photochemical reactions often produce products that are not thermodynamically favored by thermal reactions. These products may be more highly oxidized or reduced than the starting materials.
4.      Thermal reactions are often less selective and can produce multiple products.


Photochemical reactions often exhibit high selectivity, meaning that they produce specific products with little or no side reactions.