(WFRV) – Recently the University of Birmingham in the U.K. found increased consumption of flavanols allowed people to more efficiently complete cognitive tasks.

But did you know there is a sound phenomenon known as the hot chocolate effect?

Do it yourself experiment:

All you need for this experiment is a cup or mug, hot chocolate mix, a spoon, a larger spoon, and hot water.

  1. Pour the hot water into the cup
  2. Notice when you hit the bottom of the mug with the spoon what it sounds like
  3. Add in the hot chocolate mix and mix it in with the spoon
  4. Hit the bottom of the mug every few seconds. The pitch of the sound starts off low by will rise!

What is happening?

Mixing hot chocolate mix and hot water creates bubbles on the surface. Stirring them together causes the bubbles to spread out through the liquid. The speed of sound travels slower in air bubbles than it does through a liquid.

With the bubbles mixed into the liquid, the pitch becomes lower. Once the bubbles start to rise when the stirring is stopped, the pitch goes up because the sound travels through more liquid.

Similar sound effects will happen when hot cocoa is mixed with hot milk. The hot chocolate effect is also known as the allassonic effect discovered by Frank Crawford.

The global market size for hot chocolate in 2019 was valued at 3.24 billion dollars according to Grand View Research.

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