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Running Time:
00:05:16
Ever notice a brick-lined circle embedded into a street intersection? Keep an eye out and you'll see them throughout San Francisco. As part of the San Francisco Fire Department's Auxiliary Water Supply System, these brick circles indicate a cistern full of water. Join SFFD's Chief Ken Lombardi and Firefighter Hashim Anderson as they discuss the history and function of these cisterns, and demonstrate the drafting procedures used to access the water.

Project: Science in the City | Browse All

Date: September 10, 2014
Format: Expedition
Category: Everyday Science
Subject(s): general science
Running Time:
00:01:28
Burning Man is a literal hotbed of explosions and fire. Join Exploratorium Senior Scientist Paul Doherty as he looks at the properties that make up fire through the lens of the Burning Man event.

Project: Science at Burning Man | Browse All

Date: September 11, 2010
Format: Expedition
Category: Science in Action
Subject(s): General Science
Running Time:
00:10:24
Exploratorium staff member Earl Stirling demonstrates the amazing "Pyrograph", an artwork refined over four years. Like a fiery version of the museum’s classic Drawing Board, Stirling’s "Pyrograph" swings a pendulum over a sandy cauldron, tracing out oscillating patterns in colorful fire. This mesmerizing piece evokes both the Foucault pendulum and Dante’s Inferno.

Project: Miscellaneous | Browse All

Date: January 28, 2010
Format: Demonstration / Activity
Category: Popular Science
Subject(s): Chemistry, Physics
Running Time:
00:00:36
See slow-motion footage of flames licking through ice during a demonstration by Eric Muller of the Exploratorium's Teacher Institute. Can you guess what he added to the bottom of the vessel before lighting it?

Project: After Dark | Browse All

Date: December 3, 2009
Format: Demonstration / Activity
Category: Popular Science
Subject(s): Chemistry
Running Time:
00:00:34
Slow motion footage of The Cauldron by Kiki at the Fire and Ice After Dark event.

Project: After Dark | Browse All

Date: December 3, 2009
Format: Demonstration / Activity
Category: Popular Culture
Subject(s): Art
Running Time:
00:00:52
Slow motion footage of Pyrograph, a work by Earl "Dodger" Stirling that has been described as a cross between Dante's Inferno and the Foucault Pendulum. Like a fiery version of the Exploratorium's classic Drawing Board exhibit, Pyrograph swings a pendulum across a sandy, flaming cauldron and traces out oscillating patterns in colorful fire.

Project: After Dark | Browse All

Date: December 3, 2009
Format: Demonstration / Activity
Category: Science in Action
Subject(s): Art, Chemistry
Running Time:
Most things won't burn on Mars—after all, the main ingredient in the Martian atmosphere, carbon dioxide, is used in fire extinguishers on earth. So how would one create fire without oxygen? Use metal!This slow motion footage shows magnesium burning within a block of dry ice.

Project: After Dark | Browse All

Date: December 3, 2009
Format: Demonstration / Activity
Category: Everyday Science
Subject(s): Geology/Earth Science, Chemistry, Art