White smoke has emerged from the Vatican, indicating that the cardinals have chosen a new Pope. You won't be surprised to learn that the Vatican has been vague about how they make the smoke black or white.
Rev. Thomas Rosica, a Vatican spokesman, told the Times that the chemicals in the cartridges were prepared by technicians "from several different elements."
But, Ben Baxter, an English smoke-machine supplier, suggests that the process revolves around potassium chlorate.
According to Ben Baxter, director of Pea Soup Limited, an English smoke-machine supplier in Ingleby Barwick, potassium chlorate is likely a principal chemical used in the process, considering that it ignites easily and creates a fine white smoke while burning.
Baxter suggested potassium chlorate is also used for black smoke, along with a black dye to coat the smoke particles. [NewsMax]