Shin-J Industrial Company
Shin-J Industrial Company
Fog Machines and Fog Generators

Ultrasonic, dry ice, and chemical based fogging machines

Whether used in a home, dance club, or Halloween haunted house, ultrasonic and other fog machines are a very popular way to add a little atmosphere to your party.

At any major dance club or Halloween haunted house you are bound to run in to some variety of artificial fog machine. Artificial fog generators produce a cloud of low hanging or cascading fog made from a variety of liquids, chemicals, or even from dry ice (frozen carbon dioxide). This article tells a little bit about each type of fog generator and the way that it operates.

Ultrasonic Fog Generators:
An ultrasonic fog generator uses little more than plain ordinary tap water to produce a fine, misty fog that can be used in many different ways. The ultrasonic fog generator focuses ultrasonic waves at the water, causing it to turn into a cool, almost dry feeling gas. The ultrasonic method of making fog is the most ecologically friendly of the three types, and is now being used more and more in dance clubs and other high profile events in the form of such devices as the FogScreen, a fog based projection screen that can produce a video projection surface up to two meters wide (although the units can apparently be linked together to form larger screens). Similar types of ultrasonic foggers are used in landscaping and home decorating applications.

Fog Juice (Chemical) Based Fog Generators:
The more common type of fog machine found around Halloween is a chemical based machine that uses a solution of water and another chemical. The solution is placed in contact with a heating plate, and as the liquid vaporizes it creates a vaporous fog. The advantage of this type of fog machine is that it can produce fog on command and allow you to focus the fog blast more carefully than the dry ice method to be discussed later. The downside to chemical based fog machines is that the chemicals they use can be irritating to some individuals. The easiest chemical mixture uses simple glycerine (available at most drug stores), but commercial brands of fog juice more commonly use chemicals such as Diethylene Glycol. It is possible to make fog juice at home, but the results can be dangerous. Save yourself the trouble and always buy commercially produced fog juice solution.

The Dry Ice or Carbon Dioxide Method of Creating Fog:
By far the most enjoyable method of creating fog is by using dry ice is through the use of carbon dioxide in gaseous or frozen form. In gaseous form, carbon dioxide is found in special fire extinguishers that can be refilled and reused. These extinguishers produce large quantities of instant fog, but are incredibly noisy and quite dangerous to use around human flesh as a direct blast can freeze skin on contact. A less destructive and realistic method of creating fog is with dry ice placed in hot water. Several companies produce small water containers fitted with heating elements that heat normal tap water up to near boiling temperatures. When fog is needed, crushed dry ice is dropped into the hot water creating instant, authentic, fog. The fog billows out of the top or out through a common dryer vent pipe depending on the type and model of fog machine. Please remember, dry ice can cause severe burns and placing dry ice in contact with hot water always causes splashing that can strike unprotected skin. NEVER use a dry ice fog machine without reading the directions and following them to the letter.


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