Category Archives: Physics

Bring Up Fireworks—How Do We Make Colours Explode

Grégoire Bertaud | Unsplash.com

Summer festivals are not only fun for all the foods they’re providing and the activities they’re offering, but also because of their well-anticipated fireworks. Those orchestrated explosions are so grandiose that most can’t help but feel moved by the spectacle. Some may even start wondering what makes those magical displays, and I am for sure one of them. Most of my knowledge about fireworks came from school, where one of my teachers told us about the many components: Oxidizers, fuel, colouring salts and a binding agent. However, what I didn’t know pertained to how they change from one explosion to the next. They can be of different shapes, different colours, and different dimensions. All of which need to be thought through and designed to produce one of the most extraordinary events of the Summer. Whatever the reason fireworks are displayed, we should all grab this opportunity to immerse ourselves in all of their splendour.

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Bring Up Hearing—Where is this sound coming from

From the moment I wake up, I am submerged with sounds…and noises; unfortunately, I am currently living in Montréal. Noise is an unavoidable consequence when living in a city. I would rather be awoken every morning by the unique sound of songbirds. This necessarily brings me to wonder what makes certain sounds more pleasant than others. We can try answering this question, but first, we must describe how a sound is created and how it is perceived. Then, we must introduce sound as acoustic waves and reveal its characteristics, such as pitch, amplitude and frequency. Lastly, we must not forget to talk about the auditory conditions that some people struggle with on a daily basis. Only after we have gone through all these elements can we seriously attempt to understand what makes a sound appealing…or appalling.

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