In 1963, British inventor Edward Craven Walker was frequenting his favorite pub. He was staring at an egg timer, pondering how interesting and calming it was to look at and all of a sudden a light went off in his head... a LAVA LIGHT i guess you can say (okay, okay we know that was a bad joke). He ran straight home and came up with the first design for an ASTRO LAMP (that was the original name).
Edward Craven Walker
The Astro/Lava Lamp design is a very clever way of using heat from a light bulb and wax to make something into ever changing art. The heat from a 25 to 40 watt bulb makes the glass container so hot that the wax inside will move to the top while moving through the clear (sometimes color) liquid or carbon tetrachloride, the look of lava will occur. It would take 45–60 minutes for the wax to warm up enough to form freely rising blobs, when operating the lamp at standard room temperature. It may take as long as 2 to 3 hours if the room is below standard room temperature.
The first Astro/ Lava Lamp 1963
The Design of the Lava Lamps became a cultural icon all over the world, with lamps being made in England, United States, and China. In the 60's and 70's many films and TV shows would have a lava lamp on the set in the background or even in their logos.
Lava lamps are still made today and are as popular as ever!!!
The Lava Lamp was the icon of cool, the icon of hip, the icon of fun.. it was the icon of the times!!!
Lets take a closer look at the different styles/ versions of lava lamps that were made.
For more info visit the website for the original company that still makes lava lamps today MATHMOS