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The Energy of Fireworks

The Choose Energy Team
By The Choose Energy Team July 4th, 2014
For business

The energy behind fireworks

This July 4th, Americans will light off 175 million pounds of fireworks, costing over over $500 million dollars. To get those fireworks off the ground, there’s an immense burst of energy required to launch and explode those fireworks. That energy is dispersed in 3 ways: Light, Sound and Heat. Here’s a breakdown of the energy of fireworks.

Where does the light come from?

The light you see during the firework displays comes through heating metal salts, which emit different light combinations depending on the elemental composition of the heating salts.

The light comes as a result of the heating salts jumping to higher energy states. To disperse the energy required for the atoms to jump to a higher energy state, the metal salt releases light as an energy release.

By mixing different heating salts at difference times, those setting off the fireworks can mix and match and produce those spectacular

Where does the sound come from?

The signature boom that comes with fireworks comes because the air is expanding faster than the speed of sound. This results from the quick release of energy in the sky.

Where does the heat come from?

The final burst of energy that comes from fireworks is heat. Heat is the final energy byproduct of the atoms jumping to higher energy levels. As the light and sound are emitted, the heat tags along, causing the air to be significantly warmer around the firework explosions. 

Learn More

To learn more about energy, visit the Choose Energy Education Center. If you know more, feel free to share! Tweet us @chooseenergy or find us on Facebook to learn more!

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