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Fireworks

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This is an example of the interior of a firework called a "mortar shell." This is the object that is launched into the sky to explode into those bright displays we all know and love. Usually a round ball or cylinder, the top portion is filled with small pebble-like pieces called "stars." These stars are composed of different metals and chemicals that create different effects and colors when lit in the sky. The bottom portion is where the lift charge is stored, which creates an explosion on the ground in the shells launch tube in order to send this little marvel hundreds of feet into the air where it can safely explode.

Contributed by Bridget LaMonica

Fireworks have been around for an impossibly long time. Ever since their invention by the Chinese (dating back to as early as the 7th Century), they've accompanied secular and nonsecular festivities. The main uses for fireworks in the US for example are during New Years Celebrations and during the 4th of July. Fireworks are great fun and a pleasure to enjoy, but one must be aware that as with anything, fireworks can be dangerous. The ones in the video, for instance, are professional grade and cannot be lit by the Average Joe. Know your local guidelines, read the warning labels, and enjoy. :)

Contributed by Bridget LaMonica