LiquiGlide: MIT engineers figure out how to get ketchup out of the bottle

Nadine Bells
Good News
May 24, 2012

A team of engineers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology may have put an end to the frustrated thumping of the bottom of the Heinz bottle, with a new invention that allows thick sauces to smoothly pour out of bottles.

MIT doctoral candidate Dave Smith and his team of mechanical engineers and nanotechnology researchers solved everybody's greatest burger-dressing program with LiquiGlide, "a slippery coating made of nontoxic, FDA-approved materials that can be applied to the insides of food packaging, such as ketchup and mayonnaise bottles, and honey jars," MSNBC reports.

Smith claims that the LiquiGlide "could save about one million tons of food from being thrown out every year."

See other demos here.

Smith and his team aren't revealing what LiquiGlide is made of, "but we've patented the hell out of it," Smith told Fast Company. Bottle companies are already in talks with the LiquiGlide inventors.

LiquiGlide, which Smith says is "kind of like a structured liquid," has applications beyond just making ketchup more easily accessible to our grilled-cheese sandwiches:

"We were really interested in — and still are — using this coating for anti-icing, or for preventing clogs that form in oil and gas lines, or for non-wetting applications like, say, on windshields," Smith says.

The idea won the Audience Choice Award at MIT's $100K Entrepreneurship Competition.