Science, Tech, Math › Science Make Colored Fire in Every Color of the Rainbow Using Chemistry to Color Flames Share Flipboard Email Print Science Activities for Every Subject Introduction Weather Make a Storm Glass to Predict the Weather Make a Simple Weather Barometer Make Real Snow Make a Cloud in a Bottle Determine Why the Sky Is Blue Food and Cooking Determine Vitamin C by Iodine Titration Make Biodiesel From Vegetable Oil Test for Protein in Food Experiment With Fruit Ripening and Ethylene See How Much Sugar Is in Soda Fire and Smoke Make Colored Fire Make a Smoke Bomb Make Chemical Fire Perform Magic Tricks With Fire Make a Sparkler Bubbles Make Bubbles That Don't Pop Make Glowing Bubbles Make a Giant Bubble Using Dry Ice Make a Bubble Rainbow Crystals Grow Bismuth Crystals Grow a Big Alum Crustal Grow a Borax Crystal Snowflake Grow Copper Sulfate Crystals Grow Table Salt or Sodium Chloride Crystals Chemical Reactions Build a Baking Soda Volcano Make Sulfuric Acid at Home Make Homemade Dry Ice Make Hydrogen Gas Make "Elephant Toothpaste" Wallace Garrison / Getty Images By Anne Marie Helmenstine, Ph.D. Chemistry Expert Ph.D., Biomedical Sciences, University of Tennessee at Knoxville B.A., Physics and Mathematics, Hastings College Dr. Helmenstine holds a Ph.D. in biomedical sciences and is a science writer, educator, and consultant. She has taught science courses at the high school, college, and graduate levels. our editorial process Facebook Facebook Twitter Twitter Anne Marie Helmenstine, Ph.D. Updated June 03, 2020 Home chemistry projects for making fire appear in different colors—whether in a fireplace, a campfire or a lab experiment—range in all colors of the rainbow: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and violet. This project describes how you can safely create a line of fire with each of the different colors displayed in a row. In addition, you can watch a video of a colored fire rainbow, so you can see the effect of using multiple colorants. How to Make a Rainbow of Colored Fire There are six individual colorants for fire that can be created for home chemistry projects, and this one combines all of them to create a rainbow of fire, include six colors in the rainbow: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and violet. To make a rainbow effect, pour small piles of each chemical onto a heat-safe surface, such as a sheet of aluminum foil. Pour fuel across the chemicals and light one end of the "rainbow." Probably the best fuel for this effect is isopropyl alcohol because most chemicals are soluble in it. Rubbing alcohol is another good choice because the alcohol dissolves certain salts, while the water dissolves others. However, if you are concerned about using flammable liquid alcohols, consider using hand sanitizer as a fuel. This is a gel consisting of mostly water with a smaller amount of ethyl alcohol. Hand sanitizer is safer because it doesn't spread across the surface and because it's mostly water, so it automatically extinguishes the flames. On the other hand, the display won't last as long as with other fuels. Red Colored Fire Red fire is produced by strontium salts, which can be found in road flares, among other places. Lithium (like from batteries) and rubidium also color flames red. This fire color is very bright. Orange Colored Fire You can create orange fire using a chemical you likely already have at home. Got calcium? Most calcium salts will work to make orange fire. Just make sure they are sodium-free or else you'll get a yellow flame. Yellow Colored Fire Yellow fire is a natural color for most fires, but it's very simple to change the color of a blue or colorless flame to yellow by adding sodium. In fact, you might accidentally make a colored fire appear yellow because any trace of sodium in the fuel can mask other colors. Green Colored Fire Green fire is one of the easiest colors of fire to produce. There are ten chemicals that can turn flames green, the most common of which are copper sulfate, borax, and boric acid. Both written and video instructions are available. Blue Colored Fire Blue fire can be produced by burning a fuel which produces a blue flame or by heating a chemical that produces blue fire, such as copper chloride. Driftwood gathered from an ocean beach often burns blue because of trace metals from seawater. Violet or Purple Colored Fire Purple fire is easy to make using non-toxic potassium compounds. A salt substitute is an inexpensive, readily available option. Violet or purple is a flame color that is easily overpowered by other colors, so if you want a purple fire it is best to use a blue-burning fuel for your fire, such as alcohol. Disclaimer Please be advised that the content provided by our website is for EDUCATIONAL PURPOSES ONLY. Fireworks and the chemicals contained within them are dangerous and should always be handled with care and used with common sense. By using this website you acknowledge that ThoughtCo., its parent About, Inc. (a/k/a Dotdash), and IAC/InterActive Corp. shall have no liability for any damages, injuries, or other legal matters caused by your use of fireworks or the knowledge or application of the information on this website. 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