Back in 2014, one of the leading entries for the Electrolux Design Lab finalist was a washing machine that could employ tiny robots to clean our clothes. Well as it turns out, even in 2010, things did get a technological shake-up – as is evident from the Bio Robot Refrigerator, a futuristic version of a conceptual fridge that utilizes a ‘facade’ of gel for keeping our food cool. In essence, the contraption (conceptualized by Russian designer Yuriy Dmitriev) ditches any form of motor and compressor mechanism in favor of an odorless gel-like substance that cools the items inserted inside its gelatinous body. This results in a completely zero energy expending refrigerator with a whopping 90 percent of its space accounting for the conspicuously green cooling agent.
But about the ‘bio robots’ of this so-called Bio Robot Refrigerator? Well, that is where the cooling power comes from. According to the working scope of the would-be appliance, the aforementioned bio-polymer gel is embedded with such robots. These cooling agents/robots in turn make use of the phenomenon of luminescence (or producing light in cool temperature) for preserving the inserted food items. Unfortunately, Dmitriev didn’t go into more details as to how the actual refrigeration would take place – given the lack of power being claimed by the system.
In any case, suffice it to say, the 2010 Electrolux Design Lab entry is still in its conceptual stage, with no feasible commercial plan in sight. But if we put on the hat of hypothesis, there are certainly some neat features that the Bio Robot Refrigerator could have stood for. The primary one among these obviously relates to its zero energy attribute (considering the gel could somehow regulate the temperature). And even beyond sustainability, there would have been the advantage of spatial efficiency, since this flexible slab of gel (without doors and motors) would have snugly fitted in a variety of places inside the house/kitchen.