It’s an everyday irritation: Your coffee’s too hot to sip, so you dump in some milk and set it aside for a minute while you answer just one email. Turn back to the coffee, and now it’s tepid and unappetizing.
The geniuses at the Fraunhofer Institute, just like us regular folks, are fed up with such nonsense. Unlike us, though, they’re German engineers, so they’ve created the Perfect Coffee Mug to extirpate imperfect coffee once and for all.
The hollow walls of the Perfect Coffee Mug (PCM) are filled with Phase Change Material (also PCM), a waxy semi-solid substance that absorbs heat to precise specifications. Depending on the amount of PCM added to the mug during manufacturing, the vessel can be “set” to an ideal target temperature. The Fraunhofer mug is set to 58º Celsius (136.4º Fahrenheit). When coffee is first poured in, the walls of the mug rapidly absorb heat from the coffee, until the liquid is at the pre-set ideal sipping temperature. Then, as needed, the walls gradually release heat back into the coffee, to keep it at the ideal drinking temperature for up to half an hour.
Next on the engineers’ agenda: putting a tiny matter-transmitter disc in the base of the mug that keeps it always automatically replenished with fresh coffee; and screenprinting the words “World’s Greatest Gesellschaft” on the side.