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High-Pressure Cooling

High-Pressure Refridgerator
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Now, this is not for preserving food. this is just for chilling items quickly for immediate consumption (i.e. pop, juice). Have a strong metal box with one side acting as the door. inside this box will be shelves. There will be an air compressor on the outside feeding compressed air into the box. Using high pressure inside the box where the beverages are contained for an extended period of time will first heat up the beverages, but then, since the box is metal, it will eventually cool to room temperature. The beverages will be kept inside this box until they are to be consumed. When this time comes, a button will be pressed to release the pressure of the box, then any beverages can be taken out. With the comparitivly lower air pressure, the beverages will cool very quickly on the counter. You could also adjust the air pressure in the box to allow for a predicted cooling of the beverages upon them leaving the box.
espoderelict, Feb 15 2006

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       Several of us have proposed using a similar mechanism to chill individual cans of soda (and, in fact, this has been Baked). But this won't work the way you describe: the chilling will be achieved by the compressed gas expanding into the room, not by the removed cans sitting on the countertop.
DrCurry, Feb 15 2006
  

       I think he meant this, just worded it wierdly.   

       Wouldn't the air pressure crush the can? Or am I thinking completely wrong?
dbmag9, Feb 15 2006
  

       I understand the concept of the gas expanding in the room causing the cooling to occur, but the liquid inside the can would have been compressed as well and cooling to room temperature while compressed. upon removing the soda from the high compression area the liquid would expand and cool
espoderelict, Feb 15 2006
  

       Liquids do not compress very much at all, and you're not going to see a significant effect there. (Besides, the contents of most soda cans are already pressurized, so you'll make even less of a difference.)
DrCurry, Feb 15 2006
  

       Sorry I forgot to mention it, but I was thinking of using more flexable beverage containers like plastic. and also maybe refraining from carbonated drinks
espoderelict, Feb 15 2006
  

       //Liquids do not compress at all// Weeeelll, that isn't strictly true either - they generally have very low compressibility. Water compresses by only about 1% at 150 atmospheres, equivalent to a depth of 1500 metres of seawater.
coprocephalous, Feb 20 2006
  

       [espo] - I see all these fishbones you have received, and the good grace you have shown receiving them, and so some encouragement from me: your three recent ideas are a lot of fun, and every single one of your ideas has made me think. It is such a pleasure to read stuff like this instead of schemes to electricallly shock fat people or punish all who do X. So buns all around from me.   

       I agree that the gas would be cold when it came out, and it would be nice to open the door on a hot day. I do not think the cans inside would cool any more than the stuff in the room - both just because of the contact of the cold air from inside the box. The cans would not have any appreciable volume chane and so would not themselves get cool.   

       I wonder if this sort of scheme might work to rapidly cool down a house or apartment. Imagine my El Paso bungalow. I can leave the air conditioner running all day long, fighting the sun so that the inside can be 80 degrees F when I come home. Or, I can use that energy to compress air in the outdoor reservoir over the course of the morning. That metal tank, now full of very hot hair, equilibrates in temperature with the outdoor air over the day.   

       When I go home, I open the door to an a partment like a blast furnace. Note I own no pets, or candles. With the front door open, I trip the switch to the air reservoir, and the blast of heat is followed by a blast of cold as the reservoir opens into the apartment. I stroll in to an apartment now a pleasant 71 F. (I then burn my butt on the toilet seat which is still at 130 F)
bungston, Feb 21 2006
  

       Thanks to all those who have responded making me either re-think or further expand on my ideas. Bunn to you Bungston. It's always nice to here a good word every now and then. Much appreciated all!
espoderelict, Feb 21 2006
  

       The key to making a device like this work is controlling heat transfer. It's like grilling a steak. If you use a big flame the steak is burned on the outside and cold in the middle.   

       Some suggestions:   

       Removing the beverage from the container may allow you to stir it for convection and faster heat transfer.   

       The beverage does not have to be in the box to get cold. Merely being in the path of the escaping air will make the beverage cold. Like a CO2 fire extinguisher.   

       A revised version could have the beverage in a stainless steel cup being stirred outside the pressure vessel. The pressure released would rush passed the cup cooling the beverage almost instantly.   

       Or just buy a fire extinguisher and keep it around in case you need an instant cold one. It works well I saw it on Mythbusters.
Lasko, Feb 21 2006
  
      
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