A vapor compression refrigerator/freezer has been designed for spacelab to conduct life sciences experiments. It is equipped with different safety features to eliminate all probable types of failures. The whole freon loop is enclosed in a second containment so that any leakage of freon can be contained. The unit is provided with an ‘Emergency On’ switch to actuate during backup mode which provides the spacecraft power directly to the compressor and the cooling fans while removing the power supply and all normal control elements from the circuit. During this mode, the compressor runs continuously when operating as a freezer (-22°C) and is controlled by a thermostat to cycle when operating as a refrigerator (4°C). It has a push button switch at the front panel to momentarily power the thermometer by a battery to monitor the inside temperature during an emergency. It has a door switch which shuts off the internal cooling fans when the door is opened. All the important critical performance data will be downlinked through a data connector to monitor during mission.