probably not very similar to a home style unit, but wouldn't the cool down concept be the same?
Refrigeration is, in general, very similar in concept across the board. Compressor, condenser, evaporator and a circulation fluid (air, water/brine, both). The key differences being in the type of component (piston v. centrifugal v. etc. compressor et. al.).
cfg83: I have heard that that is actually a myth. A fridge will run more efficiently when it has a good path for the cold air to circulate around. Having a fridge tightly packed WILL retain the "coolth" when you open the door and close it after getting whatever you needed, but at the cost of killing air circulation when the door is close... which is greater than 90% of the time...
Circulation and thermal capacity don't need to be strictly dependent on each other You can have a refrigerator with plenty of heat sinks (water jugs etc.) and have good air circulation An interesting thing to keep in mind... Turbulent flow is much better at cooling/heat transfer than laminar flow.
Time is the best teacher. Unfortunately it kills all its students.