Phenomena

The Greedy Cup in Your Washing Machine

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A Pythagorean, or “greedy” cup, is one that automatically drains itself once filled to a certain level. In other words, it’s a self-starting siphon – one that triggers only at certain fill level. And chances are you have an example of this mechanism close at hand: inside your washing machine’s soap tray. That’s why the tray has such a clearly marked maximum fill line; if you were to put more soap than that in the tray, it would automatically drain! (Image and video credit: S. Mould)

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