Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Temperature contol mug and spoon

Pain and wait prevention system
  [vote for,

Oft I have heard complaints from people about the temperature of their heated beverages, their dilemma being (especially in the case of tea or 'infusions'), that the highly elevated temperature is vital for the full flavour extraction process, but in order to avoid burning their tongue, they must either add enough cold milk to cool it, which can be more than some people's tastes require, or wait for the moment in the attainment of thermal equilibrium between the mug's contents and its surroundings (via the mug) when the liquid in question is at just the right temperature to imbibe with the maximum possible enjoyment - they just have to finish it before it has cooled significantly further.

Now there are some people in this world who wish to make their brew with hot enough water to extract all the desirable flavours from their leaves, beans, fruit-in-little-paper-bags, &c., but also wish to commence the transfer from mug to stomach right then and there. They also want to place it on their desk while they work for an hour or two, only occasionally sipping from it when they remember its existence. I know there are, because I'm one of them.

I propose a novel mug made up of 4 parts:

Part 1: A die-cast aluminium alloy mug (or brass if people are worried about alleged links with mental health degradation when using aluminium food containers) with concentric heat-exchanger fins each slightly tapered towards the outside, in the manner often seen on would-be hot electronic components, though these are extruded - I'm assuming here that people don't like square mugs. If the heat did not escape fast enough in the prototype, internal fins could be included, though some difficulties may arise with these.

Part 2: A handle made of a strip of Al alloy sheet bent into the traditional sort of shape with a lump of plastic injection moulded around the centre to allow the user to hold it without burns.

Parts 3, 4 and a hinge and clip which shall not be numbered: An insulating jacket in 2 parts. This is made of foamed polystyrene, of the sort used in packaging, or any other more insulating form, which is injected into an injection moulded polypropylene shell with has tapering fins to fit around those of the main mug body. This insulating jacket is in two symmetrical halves with an outwards facing hinge on the external side, connected to the mug body by two rods bolted on from the inside, each with a seal to spin beach balls on their noses and prevent leaks through the bolt-holes; this is directly opposite the handle. Where the halves meet is a clip to keep the insulation around the mug of the sort often seen on suitcases (especially those aluminium flight cases) or on old-fashioned food jars.

The standard method of operation would be to make one's beverage in one's usual manner with the insulating jacket closed (i.e. on the mug); this allows the temperatures to remain high during the brewing process. When the flavours have diffused to the brewer's liking and sugar and milk have been added to taste, the insulation can be unclipped and some heat radiated away at a vastly increased rate to allow near-immediate drinking. When the optimum temperature has been attained, the insulation is clipped back on and the drink will remain warmer for much longer.

It may be found that the following modifications be made to the Mk. 2 Temperature Control Mug:

>Wire heat exchanger added on inside surface of mug; however this could cause extreme washing-up difficulties. Since this used lots of bent pieces of thin Al wire welded to the surface of the mug, this should be more space efficient than more fins as on the outside. >The addition of a lid, hinged above the handle as on German beer-mugs, but a bit more insulated than that. > A clip on battery powered fan directed at the heat-exchanger.

I am working on some CAD if anyone is struggling with this description, but I can't be sure I'll finish it soon because I have a lot of work I should be doing. I might do a sketch when I'm reunited with my scanner in about a week.

And now the spoon variant mentioned in the title:

This one is for soup to save the user blowing on each spoonful in the manner most soupists are familar. It is shaped like any other soup spoon, but has hinged aluminium fins on its base. This way the heat can be conducted out only when on the spoon so that the rest of the bowl stays hot while the spoonful cools to a usable temperature. The fact that the fins are hinged will help in its entrance to the mouth, and hopefully will allow it out again, although I fear a ratchet effect.

TomP, Apr 24 2011

I just found this one Tea-Cooling_20Dart
Another temperature control system [TomP, Apr 24 2011]

Self Regulating Hot Drink Cup Self_20Regulating_20Hot_20Drink_20Cup
[xaviergisz, Apr 24 2011]


       Instead of air-cooling, how about water cooling? The body of the mug would be made in the form of a water jacket, with a filling nozzle. The water gauge attached to the jacket is graduated. After your tea has infused, add cold water up to the level of the graduation required. The temperature of the tea and of the jacket should quickly equalise, at an inbetween temperature related to the starting temperatures and starting volumes of the two liquids. Obviously the outside of the water jacket should be insulated etc. etc.
pocmloc, Apr 24 2011

       //Instead of air-cooling, how about water cooling?//   

       Because this is trying to remain relatively compact as well - my idea has just mug+ insulation, whereas a water-jacket would add one more thick layer.
TomP, Apr 24 2011

       //water-cooling// Perhaps a system which brewed coffee at the optimal brewing temperature, then recovered heat from the mug or carafe, lowering the contents to optimal drinking temperature, while using the recovered heat to brew more coffee.   

       All right, off topic, sorry.
mouseposture, Apr 24 2011

       [mp] not bad if you're a pot-brewer, pointless if you're a mug brewer.
FlyingToaster, Apr 24 2011

       they actually make mugs infused with wax beads. when the hot brew is poored in the wax beads melt consuming energy in the phase change. helping cool the beverage to a drinkable temperature range. Then the now molten wax keeps the beverage warm, as heat of entropy means it takes a long time for the wax to get cold enough to resolidify.   

       It's tunnable by picking the melting point of the wax.
metarinka, Apr 24 2011


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