Warm beer sucks. Getting beer or any other canned beverage to go from warm to cold in a short amount of time is not impossible. It just takes some science, the basic principles of heat transfer and about 60 to 90 seconds to go from a warm beer to an ice cold beer. How do you do it? By spinning a canned beverage in ice using the SpinChill. (Previously called the “Beerouette”)
Simply put, the SpinChill is a battery powered device that spins a can in ice or ice water and will take a warm canned beverage or bottle down to 40 degrees in about two minutes. You have probably sat spinning a can in ice to get it colder faster because someone told you to try it not knowing the science behind it or why it works. The science behind spinning a beverage will be disclosed later but in all honesty, it just flat out works. The SpinChill just automates the process so you don’t have to freeze your fingers spinning the can or bottle. You can turn on the Spin Chill, place it in ice and walk away. After two minutes come back and your can or bottle will be ice cold.
Spin Chills work on all different kinds of beverage containers. 12 oz and 16 oz cans work well along with all kinds of bottles including glass beer bottles with metal bottle caps. Plastic bottles for sodas and water bottles fit into the inner-ring of the SpinChill and also wine bottles can be used in the Spin Chill as well. The SpinChill requires four (4) AA batteries. (not included) Click images below for larger and more detailed view.
How does it work?
By spinning the container, convection is introduced to both the inside and the outside of the container. This increases the rate of heat transfer and cools the beverage down at a rate of at least 20 times faster. You may have spun a beer in ice water by hand but that can get boring and tedious. It is the same science with the Spin Chill but much faster and you get have now automated the process.
Why does it not explode?
It all has to do with the air pocket. A ‘carbonated beverage’ is one in which carbon dioxide is dissolved in the liquid under pressure (Henry’s law). When the can is opened, the liquid inside starts to equalize with the pressure in the atmosphere, and the CO2 comes out of solution to do so. All carbonated beverages fizz upon opening, but whether they fizz over (liquid comes out of the container) depends on how fast the CO2 comes out of solution.
In order for CO2 to come out of solution, it needs a ‘nucleation site’ to do so. Those nucleation sites can be either gaseous pockets, or an irregularity along the wall. (Look at how a stream of bubbles form on a specific spot on a glass of beer or soda. You can’t see it, but that spot is an irregularity.)
When a beverage is shaken, the air pocket is broken up into millions of small pockets dispersed throughout the beverage. When the container is opened, CO2 in solution has sites all over the place, and it comes out of solution so quickly, that the liquid has no time to get out of the way, and it rises up and out, that is, it fizzes over.
When a beverage is rotated, the air pocket stays intact and knocks all the small bubbles off the side of the container, making one larger air pocket. There are no nucleation sites dispersed throughout, and the usual slow decarbonation takes place at the infrequent irregularities, and at the surface.