Sure you can spend all the money in the world on the coolest looking coffee apparatus to get your morning cup of joe. But as anyone who works in an office with a break room knows, even the cheapest Mr. Coffee machine can get the job done. While other methods may be en vogue at the moment, that standard drip coffee maker you take for granted is actually the product of some incredible engineering. Thanks to EngineerGuy’s YouTube channel, the humble reservoir and carafe system is getting its moment in the scientific sun.
EngineerGuy is actually Bill Hammack, a professor in the chemical engineering department at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, who also happens to make some incredibly informative videos in his spare time. Hammack’s whole channel is worth a watch, but his matter-of-fact, science-centric discussion of the design and implementation of engineering in household products is well-represented in his entry on the coffee maker. The biggest feat accomplished by the drip-method maker is that it actually contains no moving parts. This characteristic along with single heating element doing two jobs at once keeps things super cheap on the materials end of the equation. Combine that with a simple one-way valve and the laws of physics, you get a very efficiently made pot of fresh coffee. Take that, Keurig!