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Thread: Chemists, can you think of a way to make a flameless sky lantern?

  1. #1
    SEÑOR Member Aimless's Avatar
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    Default Chemists, can you think of a way to make a flameless sky lantern?

    This is a sky lantern:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kongming_lantern

    Can you think of a fairly simple way to make something like without using a candle or a flame? Like, something solid or even liquid that generates a lot of heat without burning?

    I suck at chemistry, alas
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    Let sleeping tigers lie Khendraja'aro's Avatar
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    For what reason?
    When the stars threw down their spears
    And watered heaven with their tears:
    Did he smile his work to see?
    Did he who made the lamb make thee?

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    SEÑOR Member Aimless's Avatar
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    For making a flameless sky-lantern!

    I mean, er, for the greater good. Down with capitalism
    “Humanity's greatest advances are not in its discoveries, but in how those discoveries are applied to reduce inequity.”
    — Bill Gates

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    Local talking head LittleFuzzy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aimless View Post
    This is a sky lantern:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kongming_lantern

    Can you think of a fairly simple way to make something like without using a candle or a flame? Like, something solid or even liquid that generates a lot of heat without burning?

    I suck at chemistry, alas
    So it has to generate light, has to generate enough heat to cause a reasonably sustained lift, but not enough heat to cause combustion of anything it might eventually come into contact with?
    Last night as I lay in bed, looking up at the stars, I thought, “Where the hell is my ceiling?"

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    SEÑOR Member Aimless's Avatar
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    Pretty much! The flying is the important part, for me, but the light would be nice as well. Inspired by my inner fantasy-geek otherwise I woulda turned to helium and diodes.

    Hmmm I wonder if you could use common substances to create a very simple small hydrogen balloon...
    “Humanity's greatest advances are not in its discoveries, but in how those discoveries are applied to reduce inequity.”
    — Bill Gates

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    Let sleeping tigers lie Khendraja'aro's Avatar
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    There's nothing that suits your requirements. Sorry.
    When the stars threw down their spears
    And watered heaven with their tears:
    Did he smile his work to see?
    Did he who made the lamb make thee?

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    King of Ellipses...
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aimless View Post
    Hmmm I wonder if you could use common substances to create a very simple small hydrogen balloon...
    They sell helium balloons.

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    SEÑOR Member Aimless's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Khendraja'aro View Post
    There's nothing that suits your requirements. Sorry.
    Ah, bummer

    Quote Originally Posted by Illusions View Post
    They sell helium balloons.
    Helium is too tricky in a fantasy setting
    “Humanity's greatest advances are not in its discoveries, but in how those discoveries are applied to reduce inequity.”
    — Bill Gates

  9. #9
    I mean there are plenty of flameless exothermic reactions, Minx, but they all have the problem of also being able to cause fires - they are heating up, after all. You're kinda running into a fundamental problem of thermodynamics here.

  10. #10
    SEÑOR Member Aimless's Avatar
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    Oh yeah I was thinking that I could at least put it inside some sort of enclosure so that only the top would be exposed, but I just realised that I could do the same with a regular flame
    “Humanity's greatest advances are not in its discoveries, but in how those discoveries are applied to reduce inequity.”
    — Bill Gates

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