The flash point of a volatile material is the lowest temperature at which it can vaporize to form an ignitable mixture in air. Measuring a flash point requires an ignition source. At the flash point, the vapor may cease to burn when the source of ignition is removed.
The fire point of a fuel is the temperature at which it will continue to burn for at least 5 seconds after ignition by an open flame. At the flash point, a lower temperature, a substance will ignite briefly, but vapor might not be produced at a rate to sustain the fire. Most tables of material properties will only list material flash points, but in general the fire points can be assumed to be about 10 °C higher than the flash points. However, this is no substitute for testing if the fire point is safety critical.This is a point on which oxidation of a lubricating oil starts
The flash point is not to be confused with the autoignition temperature, which does not require an ignition source, or the fire point, the temperature at which the vapor continues to burn after being ignited. Neither the flash point nor the fire point is dependent on the temperature of the ignition source, which is much higher.
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