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Unidirectional Cooler Box

Trap cold in the box
 
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Idea: In order to save energy, these refrigerator storage boxes let cold in during the cooling cycle and keep it in when the refrigerator door is opened.

Mechanism: This is an insulated box with a tupper-ware style closure. The box lid has a heat value - an opening held open by a bimetalic strip, electronic, or other mechanism when the outside temperature is below a certain threshold. When the outside temperature rises above the trigger level, the closure snaps shut, keeping the heat out.

Use(s) include: Reducing refrigerator energy consumption, preventing food from going bad in the case of a power outage, lunch boxes, etc.

FloridaManatee, Jul 29 2003

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       If electronic control is employed, the valve could be set to open if outside air temp was cooler than inside, but this would require power supply, and that's not appropriate for this use. A bi-metalic strip type* mechanism would allow simple function.   

       Other mechanisms that work on the same principles are also possible, using differential thermal expansion rates (and possibly geared action)
FloridaManatee, Jul 29 2003
  

       Howzabout a low-power fan activated on door-opening, somewhat akin to an overhead fan one might encounter at an automatic door while walking into some business establishments. (keeps flies out, too)
thumbwax, Jul 29 2003
  

       Air curtain is a good idea too, thumb. Yes, we should all look for more energy saving ideas 'cause we will need them all soon. +
sartep, Jul 29 2003
  

       A) This doesn't guarantee the inside stays cold.
B) c.f. Maxwell's Demon
phoenix, Jul 29 2003
  
      
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