How are Respiration & Combustion of Gasoline Similar?

Automobiles and living organisms actually produce energy in similar fashions.
••• Hemera Technologies/ Images

Many people might not see an obvious link between cellular respiration and the combustion of gasoline. After all, internal combustion involves the ignition of a volatile fluid. However, combustion and respiration are remarkably similar in that in both contexts one fuel source is broken down in a way that releases its energy in a form that is usable.

Combustion: Cellular-Style

Just as an automobile burns gasoline so it can move, living cells burn fuel to provide energy to the body. Instead of burning octane, however, biological organisms do this by oxidizing food, such as sugars, fats and proteins. For example, automobiles burn fuel in this way: octane + oxygen = water + carbon dioxide + energy, while organisms process food like this: sugar + oxygen = carbon dioxide + energy.

Related Articles

What Kind of Energy Makes Muscle Cells Contract?
What Are the Functions of Photosynthesis?
Type of Energy Produced by Photosynthesis
How Does the Sun Affect the Food Web?
What Do Volvox Eat?
Similarities Between Combustion & Cellular Respiration
When Does Respiration Occur in Plants?
What Are Predators, Omnivores and Herbivores?
The Advantages of Anaerobic Respiration
How to Convert Grams of Fuel Per kWh to Gallons Per...
How Are Photosynthesis & Cellular Respiration Related?
Where Does Respiration Occur?
Why Is Photosynthesis Important to Humans?
Safe Combustion Reaction Experiments
The Most Common Organic Molecules in Cells
What Are the Most Important Uses of Heat Energy in...
Is Grass a Producer or Consumer?
What Is the Sun's Role in Photosynthesis?
Importance of Aerobic Cellular Respiration
Difference Between Protozoans & Algae

Dont Go!

We Have More Great Sciencing Articles!