Glass Fireworks

This photo was created by using a standard drinking glass and a firework sparkler. Three components are needed for the sparks to occur. Aluminum, which acts as a metallic, fuel to create the sparks:. Sulphur, which acts as an additional fuel to control the burning speed, and Potassium Nitrate: which acts as the oxidizer in the combustion process. The sparks produced are a result of the Aluminum flakes heating up until they begin to glimmer and burn. Photons are emitted as the electrons in the Aluminum reach a higher state of energy (Emission), which are then grounded. This causes the firework effect Since the light sources are purely photons by the time they leave the bind of the sparkler: they follow the law of reflection. The incident rays are shot from the sparkler, and then onto the inside of the glass where they are reflected secularly There were many reflections within the glass, causing the light to appear more channelled and brighter. Thales of Miletus and Leibniz were the first philosophers/ scientists to discover this phenomenon. Samuel wall was the first to perform a spark experiment with amber and cloth, proving that lightning and electricity are equivalent. Light produced by chemical reactions (such as in this picture) can be used for a type of spectroscopy called "Spark Emission Spectroscopy". This method uses a high pulse energy laser to excite atoms in a sample: which in turn produces sparks.


Amit Rambaran
Emery Collegiate Institute, North York, ON
Honourable Mention (2014 High School Individual Category)

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