Concept refrigerator with no door won’t let you forget what’s inside

Electrolux 2012 Impress fridge design Ben de la Roche

Are you the kind of person who throws a box of leftovers in the fridge, only to forget it was ever there? One design student figured the solution to this would be if you could keep sight of what’s in your fridge whenever you walk by… so what’s a better way to do that than to eliminate the door as a whole? Wait, huh?

Ben de la Roche Impress fridge designSounds like a crazy idea, but according to Ben de la Roche’s logic, his door-less refrigerator might not sound as wild as you’d imagine. The energy-conscious design features hexagonal panels that act as an opening for each item inserted. The fridge — interestingly-named Impress — does not power to cool anything until it realizes an object is inside, and even then the machine will only cool the area where the item is located. 

“Impress is a refrigeration wall that holds your food and drinks for you, out in the open and not behind closed doors so you will always remember the lunch you prepared for work or find that midnight snack with ease,” de la Roche, 21, writes in his contest entry. “Waste no more leftovers, waste less space and save more money with Impress.”

Thanks to the honeycomb design, the fridge wall can shapeshift to fit whatever the item you are trying to refrigerate. While the idea will definitely work for beverage and or sealed containers, open plates of food or fruits will need a cover or a plastic wrap to keep the contents from spilling inside this proposed fridge design. We also wonder how well the design will work for soups or food items that need to be stored horizontally.

The eco-friendly and literally off-the-wall design earned de la Roche a trip from New Zealand to Milan to present his entry with the hopes of earning the grand prize: €5000 (approximately $6,453 USD) and a six-month internship with Electrolux at its global headquarters. Since 2003, Electrolux has hosted a Design Lab competition to undergraduate and graduate industrial design students. The 2012 final event for the design competition will take place on October 25, where we’ll hope to see more incredible designs come alive to make us feel one step closer to the future.

Image via Massey University