Fire Tornado

Make a firestorm on your desk!

Scientific name: Hexane flame rotates


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There is a fire risk - a fire extinguisher should be ready.

Always follow general safety recommendations. Please note that conducting chemistry experiments you must comply with the relevant legal procedures in your country.

Reaction formula

2C6H14 + 13O2 → 12CO2 + 14H2O


  1. Hexane

Step-by-step instruction

WARNING! This experiment is dangerous! You should NOT perform this at home. ONLY carry out this experiment, if you are a trained chemist, and you understand local safety and legal requirements, which are required to perform such experiments

  1. Take a rotating stand like in a potterywheel.
  2. Take a metal cup and pour a small amount of hexane in it.
  3. Take a 30*50 cm piece of metal gauze and roll it into a cylinder. Lock the cylindrical form with wire or clips.
  4. Place the cup with hexane on the rotating stand. Ignite the fuel.
  5. Put the cylinder of metal gauze in the center of rotating stand.
  6. Rotate the stand and watch the fire tornado.

Scientific background

Combustion of hexane requires oxygen:

2C6H14 + 13O2 → 12CO2 + 14H2O

When the metal mesh cylinder rotates, it pulls air from the room inside the cylinder.


Published on 26 March 2015

  • Fire
  • Heating with fire
  • Explosion
  • Poisoned gas
  • Organic
  • Electricity
  • Solution
  • Oxidation reduction
  • Color change
  • Precipitate
  • Gassing
  • Catalyst