|MadSci Network: Chemistry|
Microwaves interact poorly with plasmas, so the temperature of the flame is not likely to increase. The candle will not necessarily melt, either. However, the small amount of carbon at the flame tip will absorb microwave energy VERY effectively, so you will observe a brighter light at the carbon tip. Interestingly, microwaves can create plasmas, which is confusing indeed. However, they do this when irradiating gases at low pressure. For example, a burned out incandesent light bulb placed in a microwave oven (for only a few seconds, please), will create interesting colors...violet, orange and sometimes green. If you have more microwave specific questions, you can ask them directly at email@example.com Edward Peterson, PhD, P.E.
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