Professional Firework Glossary A-B

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Typically the Category 4 firework used only by professionals. An aerial effect enclosed in a paper or card “shell” and launched from a mortar tube by a lifting charge (also contained in the shell). Effects vary from plain bangs (maroons) to expansive and pretty colours or multiple effects. Responsible for most of the high altitude aerial effects seen in a professional display.

AQUA SHELL: A shell designed to be launched across, and break on, water.

BARRAGE: A continual and concentrated assault of firework effects, or the general name given to a firework that launches such an effect.

BATTERY: Several fireworks (e.g. candles) fused together for added effect, with a single fuse to light.

BEES: A swarm or cluster of points of light that move and dissipate under their own power. Similar to FISH, but less vigorous and generally less persistent.


BLINKER: A small ground based firework that strobes (flashes).

BLOCKBUSTER: A popular and long-running shell effect candle by Vulcan which became the standard against which most 28-30mm candles have been judged in the noughties. Largely superceeded in recent years by better and cheaper alternatives in cakes.

BLOSSOM: A pretty or colourful effect likened to a flower, or an effect that opens up and expands, like a flower blossoming.

BOMBETTE: A shell effect within a cake or candle, launched by a lifting charge. Can contain a variety of effects.

BOUQUET: A number of fireworks (normally candles) fused together, lighting one fuse sets them all off for a long duration or concentrated effect.

BREAK: The point at which a shell effect explodes into life.

BROCADE: Common term that describes an effect like a PEONY, in other words an expanding sphere of stars, the brocade having more persistence. In the case of gold, it is similar to willow, palm and kamuro effects.

BUTTERFLY: A professional shell effect which sees two cones of effects eject in opposite directions, creating a symmetrical butterfly effect.

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firework |ˈfīrˌwərk|noun

a device containing gunpowder and other combustible chemicals that causes a spectacular explosion when ignited, used typically for display or in celebrations.

( fireworks) a display of fireworks : they were oohing and aahing as if they were watching the fireworks [from Hi-5 fireworks of course]
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