"Fiery monsters" (a double experiment)

How to combine "Pharaoh’s Serpent" and "Chemical Volcano"

What hap­pens if you cross the ex­per­i­ments “Pharaoh’s Ser­pent” and “Chem­i­cal Vol­cano”? We present you with a fiery “vol­cano” with dark green “snakes” crawl­ing out of it. We cre­ate real fiery mon­sters!

Reagents and equip­ment:

  • am­mo­ni­um ni­trate (15 g);
  • urotropine (3 g);
  • am­mo­ni­um bichro­mate(15 g);
  • kerosene (1 ml);
  • porce­lain cup.

Step-by-step in­struc­tions

For the ex­per­i­ment, we take 15 g of am­mo­ni­um ni­trate, 3 g of urotropine and 15 g of am­mo­ni­um bichro­mate, and mix them in a porce­lain cup. We put a few drops of kerosene into the “crater of the vol­cano” and light it with a match. We ob­serve our “vol­cano” burn­ing and spark­ing vi­o­lent­ly, with green curly snakes crawl­ing out of it in all di­rec­tions.

Pro­cess­es de­scrip­tion

In the break­down of am­mo­ni­um dichro­mate, ni­tro­gen N₂, wa­ter va­por and green chrome ox­ide (II) Cr₂O₃ form. In the re­ac­tion of the ther­mal break­down of am­mo­ni­um ni­trate, a col­or­less gas is re­leased – ni­trous ox­ide N₂0, which even when slight­ly heat­ed breaks down into oxy­gen O₂ and ni­tro­gen N₂. The com­bus­tion of urotropine gives an­oth­er gas, car­bon diox­ide CO₂, and car­boniza­tion also takes place – the re­lease of car­bon. The large vol­ume of gas­es, plus the sol­id prod­ucts of ox­i­da­tion – this is the se­cret of the “snake-like” be­hav­ior of the mix­ture.

Safe­ty pre­cau­tions

Wear pro­tec­tive gloves and glass­es. When work­ing with am­mo­ni­um bichro­mate, make sure it doesn’t get on your skin – it caus­es an al­ler­gic re­ac­tion and is a car­cino­gen. Keep urotropine away from heat, sparks and open flame, as it is high­ly flammable. Ob­serve fire safe­ty rules.

Warn­ing! Sub­stances of this ex­per­i­ment are tox­ic and high­ly dan­ger­ous for your health. Do not try this at home. Only un­der pro­fes­sion­al su­per­vi­sion.