Fourth TED translation


TED2007, Filmed Feb 2007; Posted Jun 2008
Translated into Tagalog by Jaime Florentino
Reviewed by Schubert Malbas

Admit it: modern living is difficult without having a refrigerator at your home. Fresh produce from the market gets easily spoiled, so you either have to eat everything in one go, or you just have to buy processed or cooked food everytime, which kinda sucks.

Imagine if refrigeration was not available in health centers: practically all medicines and vaccines needing cold chain logistics system would be useless.

The first known method of artificial refrigeration was demonstrated by William Cullen at the University of Glasgow in Scotland in 1756, using a pump to create a partial vacuum over a container of diethyl ether, which then boiled, absorbing heat from the surrounding air. The experiment even created a small amount of ice, but had no practical application at that time.

In 1805, American inventor Oliver Evans designed a refrigeration system based on the vapor-compression refrigeration cycle, which has been and is still the most widely used method for air-conditioning and storage chilling.

Taking this a step further is Adam Grosser, a venture capitalist who thought of making a fridge that uses no electricity, but instead utilizes any indigenous cooking fire available including bits of wood or even camel dung. While still in the prototype stage, each piece of functional refrigerator costs as little as 25-40 dollars.

Grosser and his colleagues are still working on making them commercially available soon, but the seminal idea of a portable non-electric fridge is already impressive, and should be built upon by other engineers and scientists who are interested in making refrigeration accessible to everyone on the planet, with or sans electricity.