Maybe you wrap a napkin around the bottle neck, maybe you've got one of those fancy drip rings or maybe, if you're onto your third bottle, you don't really give a damn. Whatever your stance on wasted wine, it's difficult to stop dribs and drabs making their way down the outside of a bottle as it is being poured. Now one scientist says he has come up with a superior bottle design that keeps the drips in-house, all thanks to a carefully placed groove.

Daniel Perlman is an inventor and biophysicist at Brandeis University in the US, but he is also a wine lover. We know this because he has spent the last three years studying the flow of liquid as it is poured from the wine bottle, searching for ways to save the vital droplets that inevitably venture outside.

This meant watching a lot of slow-motion video footage of liquid being poured from a bottle. Through this exercise he saw the hydrophilicity (tendency to attract water) of the glass cause the wine to curl backward over the bottle's lip and stream down the side.

Armed with his new understanding of how wine escapes the bottle, he took a diamond-studded tool and carved a circular groove around the outside rim, just beneath the top. This acts as a barrier of sorts, as the wine droplets are unable to cross the groove and slide down the outside, and instead retreat to the inside of the bottle like good little wine dregs.

Through extensive trial and error, Perlman finally settled on a groove design that measures 2 mm wide and 1 mm deep (0.08 and 0.04 in). This is the perfect configuration, he says, to both stop wine leaping from one side of the groove to the other and traveling against the forces of gravity to cross the inside of the groove. He is currently in talks with wine bottle manufacturers about getting the design out of the lab and onto dinner tables.

You can see it in action in the video below.

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