Blue Fire

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Blue Fire Megacoaster
Blue Fire Megacoaster - Europa-Park - Durchfahrt des Loopings.jpg
New spinning car on the back
Europa-Park
Park section Iceland
Coordinates 48°15′45″N 7°43′06″E / 48.2624°N 7.71847°E / 48.2624; 7.71847Coordinates: 48°15′45″N 7°43′06″E / 48.2624°N 7.71847°E / 48.2624; 7.71847
Status Operating
Opening date April 4, 2009
General statistics
Type Steel – Launched
Manufacturer Mack Rides
Model Launched full-circuit dark ride / roller coaster
Lift/launch system LSM launch
Height 124 ft (38 m)
Length 3,464 ft (1,056 m)
Speed 62 mph (100 km/h)
Inversions 4
Duration 2:30
Capacity 1720 riders per hour
Acceleration 0 to 62.1 mph in 2.5 seconds
G-force 3.8
Height restriction 51 in (130 cm)
Sponsored by Gazprom
Single rider line available
Blue Fire Megacoaster at RCDB
Pictures of Blue Fire Megacoaster at RCDB

Blue Fire is a launched roller coaster at Europa-Park. The coaster opened in 2009 as part of a new Iceland-themed expansion to Europa-Park. As the first launched coaster built by MACK Rides, Blue Fire will serve as the park's tenth roller coaster and their first roller coaster with inversions. The ride's tagline is "Discover Pure Energy".[1]

Layout[edit]

Blue Fire is a combination of a dark ride and a launched roller coaster. The ride begins with a dark ride portion lasting roughly 45 seconds.[2] The ride then moves outside, where the train is accelerated to 100 km/h in 2.5 seconds using a linear induction motor launch on an 80-metre-long launch track.[1]

The launch propels the train over a turn that peaks at 38 metres (124 feet, 8 inches) high.[3] Then, the turn leads into a vertical loop 32 metres high, which is the tallest loop on any launched roller coaster in Europe. One turn culminates in a mid-course brake run; and, exiting the brake run, the train completes a twisted horseshoe roll that partially passes over a lake. One airtime hill follows, and the ride ends with a heartline roll and final brake run.

Blue Fire's twisted horseshoe roll is the first on any roller coaster in Europe and the first on any Mack roller coaster. The element itself has only previously appeared on one other roller coaster, making its debut on Maverick.

Construction[edit]

Blue Fire opened as part of the first phase in a new Iceland-themed area of Europa-Park, which expands the park's overall area from 70 to 85 hectares.[4] Europa-Park's directors, Roland and Jürgen Mack, broke ground on the new Iceland area in June 2008.[4] Europa-Park started posting teasers for Blue Fire on their website in July 2008. The teasers made reference to the coaster's acceleration, inversions, energy, and Iceland theme.[5] In August 2008, the park released an animated teaser, again showing the Iceland theme, along with the train traversing part of the ride's layout.

Construction of Blue Fire's track commenced in early September 2008,[6] and the park issued a press release about the new ride on September 18.[2] The press release confirmed that the park was expanding by 15 hectares and gave further details about Blue Fire's launch system and trains. It also mentioned that Blue Fire had the tallest loop of any roller coaster in Europe at 32 metres, which Screamscape blogger Lance Hart pointed out was incorrect because the first loop on Dragon Khan at PortAventura reaches a height of 36 metres.[2] The park has since clarified that Blue Fire's loop is the tallest on any launched coaster in Europe.

The builders of Blue Fire topped off the ride on October 1, 2008,[7] and completed the track's layout in mid-December 2008.[2]

The construction effort required that Europa-Park cut the Fjord-Rafting river rapids ride in half to allow construction workers to access Blue Fire's site. The removed part of Fjord-Rafting was restored as a tunnel section and reopened before the 2009 season.[2]

Trains and color scheme[edit]

Off-ride video.

Blue Fire has five trains with five cars each. The trains accommodate two riders per row, for a total of 20 riders per train.[8] With a two-minute, 30-second ride and separate loading and unloading stations, 1,720 riders can ride Blue Fire per hour.[2][3] The trains use lap bar restraints rather than the over-the-shoulder restraints employed on Maverick and other Intamin Accelerator coasters, and stadium-style seating like that of Millennium Force. As opposed to more conventional lap bars found on most wooden roller coasters, the lap bar on a seat on Blue Fire is above the seat when the train is not occupied. However, the restraint itself rests in the rider's lap instead of across the rider's chest.[8]

Carrying on the Iceland theme of its section of the park, Blue Fire has blue track and light gray supports. The attraction's theming was designed by P&P Projects.[9]

Height restriction[edit]

Europa-Park has set height and age restrictions for Blue Fire. No one under 1.30 metres (51 inches, 4 feet 3 inches) or 7 years of age may ride.[1]

Awards[edit]

Golden Ticket Awards: Top steel Roller Coasters
Year 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017
Ranking 34[10] 32[11] 21[12] 17[13] 17[14] 14[15] 18[16]
Mitch Hawker's Best Roller Coaster Poll: Best steel-Tracked Roller Coaster[17]
Year 2009 2010 2011 2012
Ranking 12 14 No poll 15

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c "Europa-Park". Discover pure Energy!. Archived from the original on 21 April 2009. Retrieved 12 April 2009. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f "Screamscape". Europa-Park. Retrieved 6 January 2009. 
  3. ^ a b "Roller Coaster DataBase". Blue Fire (Europa Park). Retrieved 6 January 2009. 
  4. ^ a b "World Leisure Jobs & News". Work begins on Europa-Park expansion. Retrieved 6 January 2009. 
  5. ^ "Europa-Park". Die neue Achterbahn 2009: Weitere Informationen in Kürze. Archived from the original on 1 August 2008. Retrieved 6 January 2009. 
  6. ^ "EPFans". Start frei für Runde 2 - 09.09.2008. Retrieved 6 January 2009. 
  7. ^ "EP-Board". Die neue Achterbahn 2009 (2). Retrieved 6 January 2009. 
  8. ^ a b "Coasterfriends". Europapark 2009 - Neuer Coaster & Themenbereich - TEIL 4. Retrieved 6 January 2009. 
  9. ^ "Our Projects". P&P Projects. Retrieved 2 February 2014. 
  10. ^ "Top 50 steel Roller Coasters" (PDF). Amusement Today. 15 (6.2): 38–39. September 2011. Archived from the original (PDF) on October 19, 2013. Retrieved September 12, 2016. 
  11. ^ "Top 50 steel Roller Coasters" (PDF). Amusement Today. 16 (6.2): 36–37. September 2012. Retrieved September 12, 2016. 
  12. ^ "2013 Top 50 steel Roller Coasters" (PDF). Amusement Today. 17 (6.2): 34–35. September 2013. Archived from the original (PDF) on October 19, 2013. Retrieved September 12, 2016. 
  13. ^ "2014 Top 50 steel Roller Coasters" (PDF). Amusement Today. 18 (6.2): 46–47. September 2014. Retrieved September 12, 2016. 
  14. ^ "2015 Top 50 steel Roller Coasters" (PDF). Amusement Today. 19 (6.2): 49–50. September 2015. Retrieved September 12, 2016. 
  15. ^ "2016 Top 50 steel Roller Coasters" (PDF). Amusement Today. 20 (6.2): 50. September 2016. Retrieved September 12, 2016. 
  16. ^ "2017 Top 50 steel Roller Coasters" (PDF). Amusement Today. 21 (6.2): 46. September 2017. Retrieved September 12, 2016. 
  17. ^ Hawker, Mitch. "Steel Roller Coaster Poll 13 Year Results Table (1999–2013)". Best Roller Coaster Poll. Retrieved January 5, 2014. 

External links[edit]