Chimney over Sistine Chapel to spot black or white smoke ahead of conclave

Last Updated: Sunday, March 10, 2013 - 11:34

Washington: Vatican authorities have installed the chimney on the roof of the Sistine Chapel which will release the black or white smoke that signifies whether a new pope has been elected.

The chimney is the first publicly visible sign of the preparations going on inside the chapel.

According to CNN, the Roman Catholic cardinals will gather on Tuesday for the start of the conclave, the secret papal election.

Footage released by the Vatican has shown the installation of two stoves inside the chapel.

One is used to burn the cardinals` ballots after they are cast and the other to send up the smoke signal.

If no one has won, a chemical is added to make the smoke black.

White smoke means a new pope has been chosen.

Vatican spokesman the Rev. Federico Lombardi said that if the smoke is released after dark, a spotlight would be trained on the chimney so that it can still be seen.


First Published: Sunday, March 10, 2013 - 11:34
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