In a fitting tribute to the 4th of July, NPR has an interesting piece on the biggest fireworks display, evah. In the summer of 1962, the U.S. detonated a hydrogen bomb some 250 miles above the Pacific Ocean. The charged particles from the explosion filled the sky with a rainbow of colors from Hawaii to New Zealand. Beautiful...and scary.
Oh, and yes, there were rockets. These were used to probe the blast. An investigation into what these were appears on TRF.
(Hat tips to Wayne Hill for bringing this report to my attention and to daveyfire for posting the screen snap.)