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Chemistry > Firework Chemistry (reference only)

The table below shows the compounds commonly used in industry to colour fireworks. Some of these chemicals may not be safe to use in schools. Check with CLEAPSS or SSERC recommendations if attempting to use any chemicals listed on this page or anywhere else.

Color Compound
Red
strontium salts, lithium salts
lithium carbonate, Li2CO3 = red
strontium carbonate, SrCO3 = bright red
Orange
calcium salts
calcium chloride, CaCl2
calcium sulfate, CaSO4·xH2O, where x = 0,2,3,5
Gold
incandescence of iron (with carbon), charcoal, or lampblack
Yellow
sodium compounds
sodium nitrate, NaNO3
cryolite, Na3AlF6
Electric White
white-hot metal, such as magnesium or aluminum
barium oxide, BaO
Green
barium compounds + chlorine producer
barium chloride, BaCl + = bright green
Blue
copper compounds + chlorine producer
copper acetoarsenite (Paris Green), Cu3As2O3Cu(C2H3O2)2 = blue
copper (I) chloride, CuCl = turquoise blue
Purple
mixture of strontium (red) and copper (blue) compounds
Silver
burning aluminum, titanium, or magnesium powder or flakes