Photo/Illutration Panasonic Corp. President Kazuhiro Tsuga, left, and his successor, Yuki Kusumi, a managing executive officer, attend a Nov. 13 news conference. (Asahi Shimbun file photo))

Japanese electronics maker Panasonic Corp. says it is using its refrigerator technology to develop special boxes for storing the Pfizer coronavirus vaccine, which must be kept at ultracold temperatures.

The company said Thursday that samples will be ready in March, with a product to follow a month or two later.

The box will use dry ice to maintain the temperature at the minus-70 degrees Celsius required for the Pfizer’s vaccine. It does not need to plug in.

Japan’s government has deals with various drug companies, including one with Pfizer for enough vaccine to inoculate 72 million people this year. That is more than half the nation’s population.

Japan is pushing a vaccine rollout after a surge in coronavirus cases, including a more than doubling of its pandemic death toll in the last three weeks to more than 4,600.