When Were Fridges Invented?


Quick Answer

Although humans have used various techniques since prehistoric times to keep food cold, the ancestor of the modern refrigerator didn't arrive on the scene until 1748. A demonstration at the University of Glasgow by an inventor by the name of William Cullen is the first known instance of artificial refrigeration.

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Full Answer

An American inventor named Oliver Evans designed a refrigeration machine in 1805. In 1834, another inventor, Jacob Perkins, created a refrigerator that used ether to fuel the compression cycle. Until 1929, commercially-produced refrigeration units depended on toxic gases, such as methyl chloride, ammonia and sulfur dioxide, to cool the air. The coolant known as Freon was developed as a result of a collaborative research effort by three separate U.S. companies to find an alternative to these toxic gases. It has since been discovered that Freon poses a significant threat to the ozone layer of the Earth's atmosphere.

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