Ben & Jerry’s “Sounds Cool” Freezer

Penn State research
Ben & Jerry's thermoacoustic freezer
During the recent heat wave in L.A., in which the local radio stations neglected to report 11,000 homes in various cities were without power for hours, I decided to look into alternative cooling technologies online.

The goal was to find examples that use solar heat directly or consume much less power instead of overburdening the electric grid.

I found a few candidate designs and link to them in the resulting Resilient Freedom blog post, “Hot Temperature Shuts Down L.A. Power.”

One story I just read is old news but interesting. It seems Ben & Jerry’s ice cream company paid for research into freezers that don’t use CFCs, including a thermoacoustic design by Pennsylvania State University. It was written up in the New York Times, “Thermoacoustic Freezer, The.”

Another example I neglected to mention was the lithium-bromide absorption solar cooling system installed at the Audubon nature center at Debs Park in Los Angeles. According to the Audubon website, “Audubon Center at Debs Park: a truly green building“:

“The 5,023 square-foot building is the first in the city of Los Angeles to be entirely powered by on-site solar systems – functioning entirely “off the grid.” The building also uses significantly less water than a conventional building of its size.”

Now that’s getting serious about the issue!

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