So, I made a batch of black powder in a commercial context. It was eventually used in a Swedish national television show, featuring yours truly as the guest host talking about alchemy and related matters. Details to be disclosed at a later stage.

Anyway, there were some leftovers, and my 7-year-old son and his cousin really wanted to see the powder in action. Here you go. English subtitles and all.

Don’t try this at home! Wait. I just did :/

 

3 Responses to Black powder (video)

  1. milkshake says:

    there is something more impressive, and not overly dangerous (insensitive to shock) if you stand back, far enough: finely powdered KMnO4 (it can be dry-milled in an old blender – try not to breath the dust, and it stains everything on contact): when a decent batch of powdered KMnO4 – say, 30 grams – is mixed with a small teaspoon of powdered sulfur (the less sulfur the better; the goal is to have oxidizer-rich mix that just glows/slowly burns on ignition) and then is layered with aluminium foil like a tiramisu cake, the resulting effect of Al metal burning in oxygen is like wicked version of termite. White burning metal flying in all direction, potassium colored light-purple flames. Particularly colorful when done in winter – the resulting plume dusts snow in concentric rings of purple, green and browm, as the oxidation state of the Mn-rich dust changes by the distance from the center. In the middle are white Al-oxide and some re-melted Al metal. You can set it off with a drop of glycerol or antifreeze glycol – the delayed ignition is about 10-20 seconds.

    • milkshake says:

      also, if you think the above comment is too descriptive and has liabilities please feel free to delete it

      • drfreddy says:

        No worries. I like KMnO4! It straight out of the flask together with a few drops of glycerin makes for quite an impressive reaction. Also under: Don’t try this at home.

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