The Science of Fireworks

Updated: Jul 4




Have you ever wondered how fireworks make such cool designs and produce incredible colors?? Let's learn about it!


The fourth of July, also known as Independence Day, is an American holiday that celebrates the colonies declaring independence from Great Britain! Many refer to the fourth of July as America’s birthday because this was the start of the colonies becoming their own country - what we call the United States of America!


The United States has celebrated the Fourth of July for over 200 years! The most popular way to celebrate the Fourth of July is fireworks! Fireworks require a combination of precise physics, chemistry, and engineering! Fireworks are created by trained professionals called pyrotechnicians. When you light a firework, a number of chemical reactions start happening at the same time. Inside a firework, is a combination of gunpowder and other chemical components! When the electrons in the firework react with heat, the electrons can’t contain all of that energy, so they release that energy into an explosion of light.


To make fireworks different colors, pyrotechnicians change the types of metal compounds they put inside of the firework. These different combinations create different colors. For yellow or orange fireworks, pyrotechnicians put sodium or calcium compounds inside the firework. Blue and green fireworks require copper or barium salts. For red fireworks, pyrotechnicians need strontium!


Fireworks are a great way to celebrate the fourth of July and it’s always best to leave it to experts and adults! Never play with fireworks by yourself, always have an adult with you to help you. Not everyone likes fireworks, it’s important to be sensitive to family, friends, neighbors, and pets who might be scared of loud noises or bright lights!


GIGIL STEM Kits wishes you a Happy Fourth of July! Comment below on how you celebrate the Fourth of July!


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