A month ago, we highlighted a breakthrough technology being developed by GE, which the company claimed could completely change how we store our perishables. Today, GE officially announced the groundbreaking tech in a press release, revealing that it hopes to bring magnetocaloric refrigerators to market by 2020.
Under development since 2006 by scientists at the GE Global Research and Oak Ridge National laboratories, the process will deliver a huge increase in energy efficiency. That's because ituses magnets rather than a compressor to achieve its cooling power.
As we discussed last month, the energy savings could be in the billions of dollars, and a move to this technology would drastically reduce the refrigeration industry's massive carbon footprint.
Crucially, the magnetocaloric cooling process also doesn't require the use of any hazardous materials. Instead, it relies on a water-based fluid to transfer heat. That means recycling costs for discarded fridges will also be drastically reduced.
We've come a long way since the days of Thomas Midgely's early CFCs. Hopefully, GE will be able perfect the process as magnetocaloric cooling steams towards the domestic market.