Magnesium burns in water

Usually water stops fire but in this reaction it supports it and make it much stronger!

Scientific name: Reaction between burning magnesium and water


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The reaction is very rough! There is a serious fire risk - a fire extinguisher should be ready.

There will be an explosion - keep a safe distance.

Wear lab gloves and eye protection.

Always follow general safety recommendations. Please note that conducting chemistry experiments you must comply with the relevant legal procedures in your country.

Reaction formula

Mg + 2H2O → Mg(OH)2 + H2


  1. Magnesium
  2. Water

Step-by-step instruction

WARNING! This experiment is dangerous! You should NOT perform this at home. ONLY carry out this experiment, if you are a trained chemist, and you understand local safety and legal requirements, which are required to perform such experiments

  1. Ignite a piece of magnesium
  2. Put it in the beaker with water

Scientific background

Burning magnesium reacts violently with water and hydrogen is produced Hydrogen is ignited by the heat given by the reaction of magnesium with water.


Published on 13 January 2015

  • Fire
  • Heating with fire
  • Explosion
  • Poisoned gas
  • Organic
  • Electricity
  • Solution
  • Oxidation reduction
  • Color change
  • Precipitate
  • Gassing
  • Catalyst