Published on February 22nd, 2017 | by Geetika Bhasin
McDonald’s introduces the STRAW redesigned to perfection with 3D printing
With spring around the corner, McDonald’s is offering their new product, the Shamrock shake. The shake has five varieties and all have a unique taste. McDonald’s is experimenting with different flavors and has come up with a newly designed straw for the shakes known as the STRAW or Suction Tube for Reverse Axis Withdrawal.
The STRAW is designed for the Chocolate Shamrock shake where you can enjoy the taste of mint and chocolate together rather than getting the taste of the flavors one by one. You can definitely mix the shake with your straw, but an entire team of designers and engineers have leveraged their potential to devise this unique straw, so why not avail its utilities.
The team at NK Labs and JAC design came together to redesign the STRAW. This J-shaped straw has a design resembling either a musical instrument or the pipes beneath your sink. The making process involved a lot of CAD designing, prototype creation, and fluid dynamic creations. Seth Newburg of NK Labs said that what seemed a simple design in the beginning, went on to become a challenging design. The first idea was to create a double straw but the team settled on a J-shaped straw at the end.
There are two holes in the straw at the curve one of which draws the mint flavour from the top layer and the other prevents air suction when the level becomes low. The simple looking design involved a lot of prototypes and testing. The scientists even had to suck water and oil from the straw and spit it out the measure the ratio of suction and fluids picked up, as a part of the testing process.
The STRAW can ideally bring out a flavor of 50-50 of the mint and chocolate milkshake at some points of time. But the ratio changes depending upon the amount of milkshake in the glass. McDonald’s will initially distribute 2000 straws in 80 cities as an initial round of testing the straw’s success.