Brush up on your pyrotechnic studies with these new definitions beginning with the letters P, Q and R. Staying up to date on your firework terms will keep you informed and in-the-know when it’s time to start planning your next blow out extravaganza. What are you waiting for, start studying now – but, we promise, there will be know quiz!
Palm tree – a comet shell that burns with a thick tail of sparks on the way up, then breaks with a few sparking branches
Parallel burning – Sort of like a domino fall; where one piece of burning material (such as the fuse) ignites the thing next to and so on until the entire set is lit up.
Parallel matching – ignition sequence where one fuse is connected to and simultaneously ignites multiple pyrotechnics devices (such as shells and set pieces)
Pattern shell – a shell that breaks in a precise sphere design Pearl – a one-colored star that is launched from the ground
Peony – loosely symmetrical break of stars without trails that fly outward and then begin to droop downward Pigeon – an item that has many “rats” and is designed to fly back and spin
Pinwheel – a type of firework that spins around emitting sparks
Pipe – the loose Kraft paper wrapping put over black match to make quick match fuse
Prime – a easy-to-ignite composition (often black powder, water)a binder to form a slurry, then applied onto fuse or stars composed of something that is more difficult to ignite.
PVC – a type of plastic pipe that that is extremely dangerous for use for mortars. If a shell flowerpots, it can send shrapnel-like pieces into the sky harming bystanders.
Pumped stars – stars produced by compressing star composition out of a cylindrical tube like a syringe, and cutting them off at a specific length
Punk – a safe way to light to consumer fireworks; a slow-burning stick covered in sawdust are manure.
Pyro – derived from Greek and means “fire”; a casual term for fireworks enthusiast Pyrotechnician – an amateur or profession who makes and shoots fireworks
Quick match – extremely rapidly burning fuse used to ignite multiple fireworks at (almost) once Rack – a wooden or metal frame used to hold mortars or launch rockets
Ramming Rod – a rod made of non-sparking material (wood, brass, or aluminum) used to compress pyrotechnic compositions down within a tube.
Rat – rocket constrained to fly along a line; many times shooting sparks and effects Repeater – firework which shoots out multiple aerial effects into the air
Report – the explosion and noise
Rising Effect – things such as whistles, stars, crackles, and such that are released by a shell during its ascent
Rocket – a firework that is propelled by a rocket engine where it releases effects in the air.
Roman candle – tube-shaped firework that shoots a series of stars into the air one at a time