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IceVolt 300 eutectic fridge only needs six hours of power a day
By Nick Lavars
January 08, 2020
Fliance on the power grid by leaning on what is known as the eutectic effect
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Keeping food and drinks chilled is straightforward enough when you have a continuous power supply, but not everyone has that luxury. Relying on a novel ice-based approach to keep things cool around the clock with just six hours of plug-in time, Coolfinity’s IceVolt 300 is a fridge designed for shop owners in tropical areas whose goods often go to waste due to power outages.
According to Coolfinity, more than 70 countries around the world endure regular power outages, and many of them are in tropical or subtropical zones. When business owners in these areas can't keep their goods properly cooled, it often leads to spoilage and vast amounts of wastage.
The IceVolt 300 fridge is designed to lessen their reliance on the grid by leaning on what is known as the eutectic effect. These kinds of refrigeration systems use special plates, tubes or beams filled with cooled brine or another fluid to act as a thermal sink, gently releasing cold energy as needed to keep the container at the desired temperature when the power supply is cut.
While this concept isn't new, Coolfinity says it is the first to apply the technique to large commercial coolers. It has designed the IceVolt 300 fridge in such a way that it is able to simply use water as the eutectic fluid, which is frozen solid when power is available. It says that with six hours of power each day, the Coolfinity fridge can run 24/7. And if the power is cut, the ice melts slowly enough to hold the temperature of refrigerator to below 6 °C (42 °F) for up to 48 hours.
"This way we have indeed decoupled cooling ability from energy availability by offering a fridge that keeps products cold and is also able to cool down warm products even when there is no power," the company says.
Coolfinity is launching the IceVolt 300 fridge internationally at CES in Las Vegas this week, where it has also picked up an innovation award for its efforts.
Nick has been writing and editing at New Atlas for over six years, where he has covered everything from distant space probes to self-driving cars to oddball animal science. He previously spent time at The Conversation, Mashable and The Santiago Times, earning a Masters degree in communications from Melbourne’s RMIT University along the way.
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ChairmanLMAO JANUARY 8, 2020 10:53 PM
in more stable electricity environments this would be able to capitalize on the 6 hours - in the mid to late afternoon and run powerless overnight!! w00t! i want one!!
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