The Science Behind Our Favourite Fireworks: Sparklers

Sparklers are a beautiful and safe way to have fun with fireworks. These little crackling sticks of colourful fire are among the top-delivered fireworks sold when the new year comes. They are so popular that they are even used outside of the new year events, such as bonfire nights and so on. 

When looking at the beautiful flickers of light from sparklers, you may wonder how they are made. As such, we have created this article analyzing the science and art behind sparklers. If you’re interested in learning about these beloved little firelights, read on!

Complex chemistry

Sparklers are made using three specific components: a fuel, an oxidiser, and a binder. Other elements might be added to sparklers to enhance the effects and cause colour changes, but these three are the most important parts of the firework. These form a mixture, in which a metal wire is dipped. Once lighted, it will burn and sparkle as expected. 

The Fuel

The types of fuel used in sparklers are as follows:

  • Aluminium and magnesium. These produce either a light yellow colour or a white glow. 
  • Iron. this is known for its distinctive red glow. 
  • Titanium. This produces a bright silver or white light. 
  • Ferrotitanium. This combination of two metals can produce a lovely golden light. 

Certain salts can also be added to the fuels, creating a wide range of reds, greens, and blues. 

The Oxidiser

All flames need oxygen to last. An added oxidiser can help sparklers last longer and burn brighter. Once the oxidisers are exposed to heat from the burning fuel, these will begin to decompose. It is what adds the flair to the whole flame, creating that crackling look we adore. 

These are normally made of metal nitrates, chlorates or perchlorates, and potassium nitrate. 

The Binder

This is what keeps the other two components together. This ensures they stick together and to the wire. They are made of different chemicals, but the most commonly-used binder is the dextrin. This is mixed with water to form a smooth paste that is easily applied to the wire. 

How they are made

Unlike many fireworks, sparklers are often made on automated assembly lines. A machine cuts the wires to the appropriate length before another dips them into the chemical mixture. They are then dipped a second time to ensure that enough of the mixture is on the sparkler and to ensure that they hold well to the wire. 

They will then be left to dry for about a week to ensure they are solid and safe to use. After that, they are shipped to dealers like us. The final step is including them in fireworks delivery orders from customers looking to enjoy a magical night with these real-life substitutes for magic wands. 

Final thoughts

Sparklers can create a magical experience for any event. They can add that razzle-dazzle you were missing before. Though the new year celebration might be over, it is never a bad time to have some sparklers and fireworks delivered to your home for some fun with the family. 

Why not check out our selection at Lets Party Fireworks? We deliver safe and high-quality fireworks anywhere in the UK. Order today!