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Coffee beans sing distinct tune.

The snap-crackle-pop of coffee beans could tell automatic roasters when to turn down the heat. Hot beans sing a distinct ditty that reveals their stage in the roasting process, Preston Wilson of the University of Texas at Austin reported in the June Journal of the Acoustical Society of America. Java roasters know to listen for some sounds, called "first crack" and "second crack," but until now no one had analyzed the noises, Wilson says. He roasted a small batch of green coffee beans in an electrically heated drum roaster and recorded the crackling sounds. The first crack noises, which sound like popping corn, ring out between 400 and 600 seconds after roasting begins. Those crackles are louder, deeper and less frequent than the second chorus of cracks at 620 to 730 seconds, which snap rapidly like Rice Krispies in milk. Measuring the beans' sounds is a step toward making an automatic acoustic roaster, Wilson suggests.
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Author:Rosen, Meghan
Publication:Science News
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Jun 28, 2014
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