CO2 and Entertainment in St. Louis and beyond

Carbon dioxide (CO2) has been used to highlight special effects in the entertainment industry for a long time. The gas is chilled to a liquid to quickly (and economically) achieve special effects like fog and haze. Most have seen haze effects at concerts to highlight a spotlight or on TV for cloud effects.

Low-lying fog effects can be created by using liquid CO2 that is typically stored in compressed cylinders. Low-lying fog is one of the effects of the liquid CO2 being used to decrease the temperature on theatrical fog which results in a denser fog that stays very low to the ground. Fog can also be created inexpensively by using dry ice. Technicians can heat water to boiling or near boiling temperatures in large containers and then put a couple of pieces of dry ice in those cylinders. Since carbon dioxide does not exist as a liquid in atmospheric pressure, it instantly becomes a gas. Typically there is a fan at the top of the container to blow that gas into the desired direction for the fog effects.

Liquid CO2 by itself can be used as an atmospheric fog in place of pyrotechnics in St. Louis. This can be done by releasing liquid CO2 in the air via an electric solenoid valve. When the CO2 expands to a vapor and condenses moisture in the air, large clouds of gas are created. Since the CO2 vapor disappears immediately once the valve is closed, magicians will use this type of fog creation.

The entertainment industry not only consumes ample amounts of CO2, but makes high levels of carbon emissions as well. This can be attributed to transportation, onsite generators and pyrotechnical effects that require the CO2 gas. Consequently the Producers Guild of America has created the Green Production Guide to lower carbon emissions on various film and TV production sets.

Find out more about CO2 and its effects by contacting your local specialty gas provider Cee Kay Supply, Inc. in St. Louis.