Measure the speed of light with a hot dog (sausage) and your microwave

As a science geek, I couldn’t help but be delighted by this bit of tomfoolery (via Reddit). In a nutshell, the idea is to place a hot dog on the floor of your microwave (so it doesn’t rotate), then cook the hot dog until it starts to bubble. Use a ruler to measure the length of the burn marks, throw some math at it, and voilà, you have an approximation for the speed of light.

To get a better understanding of why this works, take a look at the video below (HT to Peter Hosey).

Because Science!



  • worried

    How can you get a standing wave when the hotdog sits on the bottom? Is this an interference pattern from multiple reflections,with unknown angles, so the agreement is totally accidental?

    • David

      where the hot dog sits has nothing to do with how the standing wave is generated