Can you propose a descaling consumable for our single serve coffee makers?
engineering product design creativity chemical engineering creative problem solving product innovation cleaning
top 50%
20 months ago
Small pic coffee machine 2

Waking up to a hot cup of coffee from a personal single-serve coffee maker is a modern luxury many enjoy! In order to maintain coffee quality day after day, it is important to regularly descale a coffee maker. Descaling is NOT the same as cleaning a coffee maker. Rather, descaling removes the build up of minerals inside the machine that accumulate over time as water passes through the heating elements of the machine.

As the makers of coffee machines, we want to offer our customers a coffee machine accessory/consumable that will improve the way they descale their machines. Please watch the descaling video below to better understand our current process, which is based on pouring citric acid into the reservoir, before submitting YOUR creative idea!


Propose a coffee machine accessory/consumable to descale coffee makers.  

Before you submit your idea, consider these important guidelines:

  •   -The descaling accessory/consumable should be a replaceable item that the consumer should purchase repetitively in order to have the appliance function to specification.
  • -Please only use chemicals and acids which are intended for home use.
  • -Path that the water travels in the machine: container > heater > valve > brew chamber > out of the machine.
  • -Your idea must be compatible with the currently installed base.
  • -We are interested in creative, outside-of-the-box ideas!   If you have limited chemical knowledge, please provide enough information as to justify that your product could actually work.


In your proposal, please address the following:

  1. Describe your descaling coffee machine accessory/consumable. How does it remove mineral build up inside the coffee maker?
  2. Why can your idea be considered a coffee machine accessory/consumable and not a general cleaner or descaling product?
  3. Will a coffee machine user know that your accessory/consumable has worked? If so, how will they be able to tell?
  4. How is your idea more consumer-friendly and easy to operate than the current solution?

Bonus: Provide any additional texts, sketches, chemical descriptions, etc. that defend the feasibility of your proposal.

    Submissions will be graded on the following criteria:
  • Meets Deliverables
  • Creativity
  • Clarity
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