Charcoal is nothing but the carbon residue obtained after the combustion of wood. This burning process involves lower oxygen rates. During earlier days, there weren’t any stoves or induction systems. People used to cook by burning dry woods, branches of trees, cow dung, and other solid dry particles. In this process, the moisture content present in the wood and other harmful particles present is eliminated.
Charcoal has been employed in various sectors serving distinct purposes. There are different types of charcoal-like bulk activated charcoal, sugar charcoal, lump charcoal, sawdust briquettes, and many others. The use of charcoal dates back to the ancient period. As the World evolved, the usage of charcoal has also evolved and has been utilized in various sectors of discipline accordingly.
Types of Charcoal
These different types of charcoal are obtained from varied combustion reactions. Each charcoal possesses remarkable properties and characteristics. Thus it has been engaged in wide varieties of industries. It induces flavours in food due to certain components present in the charcoal, namely mesquite.
This charcoal has minute and small pores, which uplifts its surface area proportionally. The bulk activated charcoal is produced by burning resources like coal, wood, coir, peat, petroleum pitch, and others. This makes activated charcoal carbonaceous, and it is also widely called activated carbon. These bulk activated charcoal has been primarily used for air purification and in the storage of methane, hydrogen efficiently. These have also been incorporated in toothpaste as a teeth whitening agent.
Sawdust Briquette Charcoal
This briquette charcoal is profoundly used for barbeque. This charcoal can burn for long hours, which is about 4 – 5 hours. It doesn’t have any pungent smell or odour, no smoke, produces an enhanced heat quotient, and doesn’t produce any ash—people in an area like Greece, the middle east, Korea, and Taiwan.
These are traditional charcoal that is obtained from combusting hardwoods. These have been highly used for making barbeques and comparatively produce less ash than briquettes charcoal. This charcoal reaches the hottest point quickly and helps in cooking foods easily.
Coconut Shell Charcoal
This charcoal is in the shape of coconut shells. By implementing the distillation process, the outer shell of the coconuts can be valuably transformed into charcoals. These give more efficient and reliable results to natural charcoals available extensively. As these are not obtained by the standard process of combustion, it exhibits stronger and longer burning properties. No odour or smell is left out when combusted.
The regular combustion technique is not used to produce these extruded charcoals. These are obtained using extrusion methodology. These particles are pushed into moulds using high pressure. The type of wood used to make these extruded woods raw or carbonized wood. This type of wood is also employed for outdoor grilling and barbeque.
It is one of the purest forms of charcoals. The sugar is carbonized, and the byproduct obtained is boiled with acids to eliminate the remaining mineral content in the product. These are employed in making artificial diamonds when burnt at the highest temperature, which is up to 3500 °c. It also acts as a decolorizing agent and possesses reducing property.
Areas of Utilization
Charcoal has been utilized in various areas. It has been used vitally in the art profession. During ancient times it is used as a colour, which is being employed in drawing and creating sketches. It is further classified based on the kind of charcoal used for production. Some of the types are compressed willow, powdered, and vine charcoal.
The other areas where these charcoals are adopted are medical, horticulture, animal husbandry, cosmetics, and others.