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Many stories [especially stuff like manga or anime] contain characters with the ability to output flames from their skin. This would require heat resistant skin while still outputting said flames / heat. What would be the best way to scientifically / biologically make something similar to this? [example - Akai from mission : yozakura family, but with only the flame output. Remaining abilities seem unable to be recreated using our science]

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    $\begingroup$ Last I checked no known lifeforms spontaneously catch fire. If you don't want to bend the rules of physics at all the answer is "It's impossible." If you do you're going to need to talk about how you're willing to bend the rules to make this possible. $\endgroup$
    – sphennings
    Commented Nov 3, 2021 at 23:27
  • $\begingroup$ Hi Akai. We try not to immediately close the questions of new users, but @sphennings makes a very good point, and has directed you to what I would consider to be a duplicate question. Does the question Sphennings linked to resolve your problem? If not, you'll need to be much more specific about what problem you're trying to resolve. When you have a moment, please take our tour and read our help center to better understand our site. Thanks. $\endgroup$
    – JBH
    Commented Nov 3, 2021 at 23:47
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    $\begingroup$ How much flame is needed and for how long? Does the creature simply need to be alight briefly or generate flamethrower levels of heat? This shapes your question because combustion requires fuel and lots of combustion correspondingly requires lots of fuel. $\endgroup$ Commented Nov 4, 2021 at 0:15
  • $\begingroup$ @sphennings spontaneous combustion kind of already exists... so it is possible and we just need a good reason to why it can happen in a specific fashion. $\endgroup$
    – IT Alex
    Commented Nov 4, 2021 at 17:54
  • $\begingroup$ @ITAlex I don't know if unexplained combustion is a good substitute for a creature that can catch fire at will, and survive. $\endgroup$
    – sphennings
    Commented Nov 4, 2021 at 18:47

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Fire retardant gels:

First, your organism needs to have some kind of fire-retardant material on it's skin to separate the heat from the flesh beneath. I would suggest some biological fire retardant gel that the organism exudes from somewhere on it's body (or combines with natural materials to produce a gel). Various products are available commercially and are proprietary, but fundamentally it is often a mucoid material (water-soluble typically but some aren't) that doesn't mix with whatever flammable material the person/organism would use. It doesn't allow infinite burning, but most organisms would have limited flammable materials anyway, so I don't think this is a huge problem. It is commonly used in the stunt film industry and as a protective material for fire fighters. Check out THIS video

This could be as simple as a thick layer of mucus, possibly mixed with dirt and/or clay, so there is a thermal mass of material on the outside of the organism. This outer layer absorbs the heat first, allowing the organism to be unburned for the duration of the burn. Being able to apply mucus to the area allows thicker and thinner coatings, or even reapplication to allow a new burn.

The flammable source is up to you, but biological organisms produce a wide variety of potential flammable fluids and gasses that could be exuded or jetted out. I suppose they could have a wood-and-grass suit to start on fire, or expel ground-up flammable powders (like flour dust) from the environment, or harvest petroleum distillates, or digestion-byproduct methane (most animals exhale most of the methane they produce). Organisms are capable of synthesizing ethanol, or could ferment it and then use it as a flammable material as well.

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  • $\begingroup$ Nice party trick, but low probability to have it appear as a "burning rage". And that's because the life as we know it evolved to eliminate wasteful excesses (when the same end can be met by more efficient means), and large amount of "potential flammable fluids and gasses that could be exuded or jetted out" (energy rich) that are accumulated in enough quantities to occasionally make a difference but stay unused for long time otherwise is such a wasteful mean. $\endgroup$ Commented Nov 4, 2021 at 1:31
  • $\begingroup$ @AdrianColomitchi Preaching to the choir. Life as we know it evolved with a healthy fear of fire, and generally don't produce fire. But if someone wants an organism with fire, use gel to protect yourself. I suppose they could have a wood-and-grass suit to start on fire, or expel ground-up flammable powders (like flour dust) from the environment, or harvest petroleum distillates, or digestion-byproduct methane (most animals exhale most of the methane they produce) but notice I said very little about the combustibles. Mucus is common and cheap, though. $\endgroup$
    – DWKraus
    Commented Nov 4, 2021 at 1:42
  • $\begingroup$ "But if someone wants an organism with fire... if someone wants an organism with fire, use gel to protect yourself" Well, that's the best one can hope given the circumstances of the question, that's why I ++-ed the answer. To make it better, it would worth adding the notes in comment to the answer itself. $\endgroup$ Commented Nov 4, 2021 at 1:48

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