CHARLES D. WINTERS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY CHARLES D. WINTERS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Calcium carbide is used in carbide lamps, in which water drips on the carbide and the acetylene formed is ignited. These lamps were usable but dangerous in coal mines, where the presence of the flammable gas methane made them a serious hazard. The presence of flammable gases in coal mines led to the miner safety lamp. However, carbide lamps were used extensively in slate, copper and tin mines, but most have now been replaced by electric lamps.
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