Video: How Fireworks Dazzle

June 30, 2014
An oxidizer and fuel source work in concert to create all sorts of spectacular colors.

Be sure to buff up on your chemistry knowledge before taking the family to see fireworks this July 4. You can make them shout out extra OOOOOOs and AHHHHHHHs when you dazzle them with the science behind the display. In the latest American Chemical Society Reactions video, John Conkling, Ph.D., a professor at Washington College in Maryland who wrote the book "The Chemistry of Pyrotechnics," explains how the oxidizer and fuel source work in concert with certain chemical mixtures to create all sorts of spectacular colors. Enjoy.

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