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Blowing Things Up

Blowing Things Up

Well, it’s nearly the Fourth of July. You know, that wonderful time of the year when we get to just blow things up.

Anyways, National Grid (NGRID) of Upstate New York decided to try their own hand at blowing things up over the past few months.  Unlike most kids, who stick to sparklers, Roman candles, firecrackers, or even my uncle, who once blew up a toilet in high schooL, National Grid has been blowing up something even more strange:

Manhole Covers

Yes, manhole covers. The same manhole that are famous for being a Microsoft interview question, have apparently been exploding on their own in Albany, New York.
This has happened 6 times over the past few months.  In case your curious as to the science behind how manhole covers magically shoot out of the street, How Stuff Works has a great explanation here.

Essentially, older underground wires fray, heat up the insulation, which causes gases to rise, (thus the pressure) and then the electricity sparks the wires, shooting a manhole cover up in the air.

So, now that you know how manhole covers pop out of the ground like Mentos in Diet Coke, you can fully understand the cool science behind it.

With a word of caution from the Power2Switch team- enjoy the holiday, have fun and be safe. No one likes to lose a hand from a bottle rocket, so if you’re going to go blow stuff up (avoid high school toilets) please be safe and do it away from any body parts.

That said, just remember our country chose it’s freedom, and you can declare your independence from excessive energy bills with Power2Switch.  Have a safe, festive and fun holiday. Fireworks

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