Kool & The Gang

For many humanitarian and social projects, fridges are necessary – e.g. to cool medication or vaccinations. Locally organizing or transporting fridges to refugee camps is expensive due to their size and weight – loading them with other goods is not really practical and time-consuming. An inflatable fridge with a compact cooling unit using innovative insulation technology could improve the flexibility and availability of fridges in field operations.

Our goal is to build an inflatable fridge prototype in order to produce a cheap and easily transportable cooling device.

It should be based on either traditional fridge thermodynamic technology (mechanical) or a thermo-electric system and include a rigid base to house the associated technology, with an inflatable box above. 

It should be applicable in situations where transport of the fridge is difficult and a power supply might not be available (for example camping, transporting prepared foods from home to an office/school, humanitarian aid and other field operations).

Applications in the future might include facilitating transportation of vaccines during the last mile, or preventing biological samples and sensitive drugs from decay. Some of these applications should be investigated as a case study.


Project Team

Charlie Cook

Charlie holds a Masters in Civil Engineering and has a passion for social enterprise and clean technology. He has just begun a two year fellowship with CERN as part of the civil engineering team investigating the feasibility of the Future Circular Collider – a possible 80km long successor of the LHC. Charlie is motivated by the idea of solving tricky problems faced by society and looks forward to meeting similarly motivated individuals at THE Port.

David Galbraith

An Architect (working for Norman Foster) turned Internet Entrepreneur, Co-founder of San Francisco Incubator, MRL Ventures (where he lead the project which became Yelp), Moreover.com, the first news aggregator (acquired by Verisign) and Realtime Anywhere (the first Internet company in London’s Shoreditch, in 1994). David created the visual bookmarking concept behind Pinterest and co-authored the widely used RSS standard.

DJ Forza

DJ Forza works in Innovative Finance at Gavi, The Vaccine Alliance. DJ’s team operates as an internal think tank to develop private sector partnerships that catalyse access to immunisation against vaccine-preventable diseases for children in the world’s poorest countries. Originally from Seattle, DJ holds an MBA from the University of Washington, and served as a Kiva Fellow in Tbilisi, Georgia, where she worked to develop microfinance products for the entrepreneurial poor.

Jessica Bennett

Jessica is a British Canadian of confused nationality due to a nomadic upbringing. She obtained her MA in Natural Sciences from the University of Cambridge, specializing in pathology. In 2010, Jessica moved to Geneva and started working for FIND, an international organization that aims to improve access to high quality, affordable diagnostic tools. In her current role, she is responsible for the grant, budget and project management of a PEPFAR-funded CDC Cooperative Agreement that focuses on laboratory system strengthening and roll-out of WHO-approved diagnostics in multiple countries.

João Bárcia

João Bárcia is a 27 years old guy from Lisbon (Portugal) who studied to be a Physics Engineer and ended up working as a Media Designer. For the past three years he has been at CERN where he co-founded the CERN Media Lab. The goal of this group is to explore innovative interactive technologies for Education and Outreach. He’s been working as lead hardware expert, researching and developing creative solutions for visit points as well as providing consultancy for various departments in CERN.

Jonathan Moy De Vitry

Jonathan has a management background but you might not guess it if you met him riding on the street. He works part-time as an innovation consultant and part-time as a bicycle courier delivering high-value goods throughout Geneva. Besides that he’s leading a project to use the Oculus Rift VR platform to increase public awareness about mental health issues, especially ADHD. Want to have a lively chat? Ask about his old master’s thesis topic, defensive innovation, which is the study of how firms and industries can leverage technology to prosper despite abrupt changes in their environment.

Kitty Liao

Kitty is an entrepreneur, engineer and innovator. She is a hackathon enthusiast and she has been with THE Port since its launch in 2014. She has 10+ years of experience in low-temperature and multi-disciplinary systems, user-centred design, vaccine cold-chain in hard-to-reach and remote areas, design for low-resource settings, prototyping and project management. She is founder and CEO of Ideabatic, an award-winning social enterprise. She is an Enterprise Fellow at the Royal Academy of Engineering (UK). Kitty enjoys travelling, designing and making her own clothes, cooking and swimming.

Ricardo Páramo

Ricardo Páramo is a creative head from Burgos, in north Spain. His work experience goes from the auto industry to model making, furniture-, toy- or cookingtools- design, playground building or art foundry, as well as graphic design. He mixes his technical knowledge and handicraft skills with a creative point of view. In 2012 he established his own design studio in the city of Basel, Switzerland.

Romain Bazile

Building engineer by training, but passionate about subjects such as electronics, design, astronomy, science and many more, Romain Bazile has multiple hats to play with. Since his involvement in the Team Rhone Alpes with their house Canopea during the Solar Decathlon Europe 2012 (which the team won), he believes in learning by doing and try to tackle every challenge he finds on his path. In his eyes, only multidisciplinary teams can nowadays solve the biggest problems we face on our planet.

Steffen Raetzer

Steffen is an engineer and entrepreneur. Initially, he worked in a corporate environment in the areas of business management, marketing and strategy. In 2010, Steffen cofounded a company which implements a better way to produce electricity using decentralized power generation and biogas as renewable energy source. Steffen is passionate about creating and implement innovative and sustainable business solutions that better use the planets resources and promote good corporate citizenship.

Tim Head

Tim works at CERN, doing science with data. Also: python, statistics and triathlons. Tim works on the LHCb experiment. Here he works on the design of the future detector, pattern recognition software as well as the software trigger (deciding in real time what data gets recorded). He has experience as a software engineer, leading teams of experts in different fields, statistics and all the things you associate with a “scientific approach” to solving complex problems. He is a big fan of building a minimally viable solution to problem and then iterating on it.


Kool & The Gang