The Fire Tornado Project

The Fire Tornado ProjectA fire tornado forms when fire is caught up in a vortex. Fire tornadoes or fire devils occur naturally in some wildfires, but you can make a small scale fire tornado yourself. This is as awesome as it sounds – want to learn how to make a fire tornado?

Check out the video below by The Bearded Science Guy who explains how you can create one at home, because seriously dude, you can actually make one at home!

What You Need…

In order to produce a fire tornado, you’ll need a source of fire and the ability to create an air vortex or whirlwind. The fire tornado is made by placing a container of fire onto a spinning surface.

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A cylinder of mesh or screening forces the air into a column to force air into a vortex.
  • lazy susan or table or chair that can rotate freely
  • container of fire (e.g., fireproof bowl containing pieces of sponge sprinkled with lighter fluid or alcohol)
  • cylinder of wire mesh or screen with diameter to fit outside the fire bowl.

Make the mesh cylinder by rolling a sheet of metal window screening or chicken wire into a tube. Be sure the tube is wide enough to fit around the container you’ll be using for fire. Staple the ends of the tube to secure it into a cylindrical shape.

Create the Fire Tornado…

Practice this set-up without igniting the fire to be sure your container won’t go spinning off. It’s a good idea to secure the bowl and screen tube to the lazy susan with tape or glue so that it won’t go flying off when you spin the fire. It’s also a good idea to have a fire extinguisher handy, just in case.

  1. Set the fireproof bowl in the center of the lazy susan. Secure the bottom so the bowl will remain stable when spun.
  2. Place the sponge with lighter fluid into the bowl.
  3. Set the metal mesh cylinder around the bowl. See if you can spin the lazy susan without incident. You may need to secure the cylinder.
  4. Once you are confident of your set-up, ignite the fire in the bowl and slowly start spinning the lazy susan.

Isn’t that cool enough?

But please, PLEASE be careful, and only attempt this if you’re a competent, careful, (and sober) adult, taking all necessary precautions – goggles, flame retardant gloves and an appropriate coat/apron.


via Chemistry About

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