The universe in a cup of coffee (video)


Credit: The American Chemical Society

WASHINGTON, Jan. 24, 2017 — Reactions, the ACS YouTube channel that covers the chemistry of everyday life, is joining PBS Digital Studios, a network of original web series from PBS that explore science, arts, culture and more. To celebrate, the Reactions team is doing a deep dive on the surprisingly complex and beautiful chemistry behind their favorite morning beverage: coffee.

The chemistry of the universe is, in a way, in your cup of coffee — from the evolution of caffeine as a defensive chemical weapon in plants to the swirling eddies of milk and coffee fueled by diffusion, Brownian motion and other phenomena. After watching the video, you'll never look at your morning coffee the same way again:


Reactions is a video series produced by the American Chemical Society and PBS Digital Studios. Subscribe to the series at, and follow us on Twitter @ACSreactions to be the first to see our latest videos.

The American Chemical Society is a nonprofit organization chartered by the U.S. Congress. With nearly 157,000 members, ACS is the world's largest scientific society and a global leader in providing access to chemistry-related research through its multiple databases, peer-reviewed journals and scientific conferences. ACS does not conduct research, but publishes and publicizes peer-reviewed scientific studies. Its main offices are in Washington, D.C., and Columbus, Ohio.

The PBS Digital Studios network on YouTube includes more than 15 online original series, including co-productions with PBS member stations across the country. This digital-first programming is designed to engage, enlighten and entertain online audiences. The PBS Digital Studios network has more than 10 million subscribers, and its channels have generated more than 915 million views. Series include the multiple Webby Award-winning PBS Idea Channel, as well as popular series such as Crash Course, It's Okay To Be Smart, Space Time and more.

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