Tired of waiting for your refrigerator to cool down drinks? Now you can pre-order Juno, a countertop appliance the size of a coffee maker that uses heat discharge technology to bring drinks to cold temperatures in minutes.
The instant fridge Juno was born from an idea of Matrix, the company behind the Power Watch, a smartwatch that does not need to be recharged.
Edit: sure that at the naming level the company does not make happy choices. It's a fridge of the future but it's named after a star-studded movie from the past, and it made the product under the name of another movie (Reitman and Ellen Page, which I love). End of parenthesis, dear Peltier fridge.
Instead of capturing heat to harvest energy, the new appliance cools drinks using thermoelectric technology to quickly dissipate heat, even from inside the drink. An instant glass cooler? A blast chiller for wine? Comme si comme ça.
How the Juno instant fridge works
Users open Juno's lid and place a bottled or canned drink into the cooler, close the equipment, and press one of the two top buttons for their preferred cooling time. Stop. There is no display. A simple strip of LED light changes from red to blue when the drink is cold.
What happens inside the fridge is very different: Juno knows how to cool drinks using the so-called “Peltier effect”. The compartment is sprayed with super cold water and the drinks are rotated at high speed to bring the warmer molecules to the rim of the container and then out through the back of the device.
You can also simply pour the drink into a closed container and put it in the Juno. There is also a thermos-like container that is sold separately, built to fit the device. The space is large enough for a large bottle of champagne and high enough to fit three cans vertically, one on top of the other.
The thing that cools the most? Prices
Paradoxically, it is the amount needed to buy Juno that leaves the most chilling. Ok, instant cooler, more or less fast. Maybe though (I mean maybe) 300 euros is a bit too much for a cool drink with a mini fridge. It is true that 200 bags are enough in advance (with shipping date scheduled for the 3rd quarter of 2020). but even that figure is over-flow. For that amount you can't convince me even if you call it a "blast chiller". If you give me that money, I blow directly on the drink for half an hour, even an hour if needed.
It may be attractive to wine connoisseurs or caterers, but the truth is that Juno serves above all as a “proof of concept”. A technology developed to then find application on a larger scale.
An enhanced version of it can quickly cool containers for transporting meat and perishable products. Or maybe hotels could get rid of the always-on mini-bar and use Juno only when needed, saving on energy costs.
Whatever its application, Juno shows how in the future we will manipulate the temperature of food and drinks at will, both for cold and heat. We did it already for another (and for the climate, unfortunately).