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Appliances

Sharp has designed an earthquake-proof fridge

The Japanese electronic giant's latest fridge automatically locks if it senses an earthquake and has a solar-powered backup battery in the event of a power outage.

Sharp

If there's one thing that Japan is known for, it's technological innovation. If there's a second thing Japan is known for, it's earthquakes. Sharp, with its effectively earthquake-proof new refrigerator, just married the two together.

The company's new refrigerator is designed specifically for the event of an earthquake -- it has a solar-powered backup battery to draw from during a power outage and its doors lock automatically if it detects any ground tremors.

Japan is placed along the Pacific Ring of Fire, the most active earthquake belt in the world. The country has endured tremendous seismic activity in recent years, hit by a 7.3-magnitude earthquake in April and devastated by a quake and tsunami combo in 2011.

For when the next earthquake hits, Sharp says its fridge can provide 3 days of solar-powered cooling for the whole unit, or up to 10 days for just the freezer compartment, if the power goes out.

The idea behind its doors locking automatically is to prevent food from spilling out due to an earthquake, as well as to avoid hazards like slippery floors and broken glass (on top of the primary hazard of, you know, the earth quaking). You can see a very Japanese demo here.

The Sharp fridge was released earlier this month at ¥480,000 (around $4,600, AU$6,100, £3,100). No word yet on if it'll hit other earthquake-prone regions.