Which gas is emitted when a matchstick is lit?

The type of gas that is emitted when a matchstick is lit depends on the material used in the matchstick heads. The usually used match stick heads are an admixture of red sulphur in major portion and red phosphorous in trace quantities.When the matchstick is struck on the box, the friction caused is sufficient to ignite the phosphorus. The combustion of phosphorus is exothermic and hence releases heat. The sulphur in the head in turn catches fire by reacting with atmospheric oxygen to give sulphur dioxide. The gas that is emitted, when an ordinary matchstick is lit, is, therefore, sulphur dioxide. The cellulose of the matchstick that is subsequently burnt emits CO{-2}gas. . In matchsticks, such as those used in Diwali fireworks, a variety of chemicals, in minimal quantities, are used for a variety of colours and a sparkling effect.

Source: thehindu.com