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What medical tech can quickly make a good cold brew?

Answer: Ultrasound.

A person pours cold brew coffee from a glass pitcher into a glass with coffee beans and ground coffee displayed.
Summer is right around the corner and so are cravings for cold brew coffee. Unfortunately, a good cold brew takes up to a day to make, unless you’re willing to head to a coffee shop every time you want one. Or if you buy an expensive machine for making them at home.

But what if you could whip up a good cold brew in your regular coffee machine? A team of engineers at Australia’s University of New South Wales (UNSW) has developed a device that attaches to a coffee machine to turn it into a cold brew machine. Their device uses a transducer to send 38.8-kHz sound waves through a horn to the portafilter of an espresso machine, “transforming the coffee basket into a powerful ultrasonic reactor.”

“Ultrasounds accelerate the extraction process due to acoustic cavitation,” said Dr. Francisco Trujillo of UNSW. “And the acceleration is enormous — we are reducing what would typically take 12 to 24 hours to less than three minutes . . . We are very excited about developing this technology, which can be used by companies that already manufacture coffee machines, so consumers will be able to enjoy a 3-minute ultrasonic cold brew at home.”