Phase Change Matters RSS

 

The award-winning Phase Change Matters blog tracks the latest news and research on phase change materials and thermal energy storage. E-mail tips and comments to Ben Welter, communications director at Entropy Solutions. Follow the blog on Twitter at @PureTemp. Subscribe to the weekly PCM newsletter. Or join the discussion on LinkedIn.

RECENT POSTS

TAGS

ARCHIVE

Research roundup: Refrigerated display cabinet; MA/HDPE composites with nano-additives; incinerator ash; more

Ben Welter - Sunday, July 31, 2016

The novel use of phase change materials in an open type refrigerated display cabinet: A theoretical investigation [Applied Energy]

Reducing cell-to-cell spacing for large-format lithium ion battery modules with aluminum or PCM heat sinks under failure conditions [Applied Energy]

Synthesis and thermal properties of the MA/HDPE composites with nano-additives as form-stable PCM with improved thermal conductivity [Applied Energy]

An experimental study of thermal management system using copper mesh-enhanced composite phase change materials for power battery pack [Energy]

Novel Multiphase Change Materials for Energy Storage Application in Buildings [14th International Energy Conversion Engineering Conference, Propulsion and Energy Forum]

MSWI bottom ash for thermal energy storage: An innovative and sustainable approach for its reutilization [Renewable Energy]

Response surface method optimization of V-shaped fin assisted latent heat thermal energy storage system during discharging process [Alexandria Engineering Journal]

PCM briefing: Pelican BioThermal opens offices in South Korea, Germany; BASF tops global list of chemical companies

Ben Welter - Friday, July 29, 2016

• Commercial appliance maker Rockwell Industries of Hyderabad plans to open a network of retail stores across India. Rockwell's products include a line of eutectic freezers designed to retain subzero temperatures for up to 16 hours in the event of a power loss.

• In partnership with CoolPack.comCold Chain Technologies of Holliston, Mass., is conducting an industrywide survey "to benchmark the methods used to maintain the efficacy of temperature sensitive therapeutics throughout the supply chain." Survey results will be published in October.

BASF, with chemical sales of $ $63.7 billion in 2015, is No. 1 on C&EN's latest Global Top 50 list. The magazine reports that the 50 companies combined for $775.2 billion in sales last year, a 10.8 percent decline from a year earlier.

Pelican BioThermal, the temperature-controlled packaging specialist, has added offices in South Korea and Germany to support growth in Asia and Europe.

Daniel Frey, a professor of mechanical engineering at MIT, has been appointed the new faculty director of the school's D-Lab. D-Lab's mission is to give students a hands-on opportunity to design and share affordable and effective technologies to address problems in developing countries. A PCM-powered vaccine cooler is among the projects Frey has worked on with students.

• New from Market Research FutureSoy-Based Chemicals Market Research Report Forecast to 2027

• New from QY ResearchGlobal Green Building Materials Industry 2016 Market Research Report

• New from Future Market InsightsTemperature Controlled Packaging Solutions Market: Global Industry Analysis and Opportunity Assessment 2015-2025

• Membership in ASHRAE has topped 56,000, the highest number in 14 years. The international organization focuses on energy efficiency, air quality, refrigeration and sustainability in the built environment. It has members in 130 countries.

• A group representing manufacturers of refrigeration and air conditioning equipment is pushing the European Union to set tougher energy-efficiency targets. The European Alliance to Save Energy argues that doubling the EU’s current annual rate of energy productivity of around 1.5 percent would sharply reduce household energy bills, increase GDP and create more than a million jobs.

Patent application: Food/beverage container with thermal control

Ben Welter - Thursday, July 28, 2016

Patent drawing of beverage container with thermal controlU.S. patent application 20160215194 (applicant Trent University, Canada):

"A container for a food and/or beverages is provided. The container is designed such that it may have the capability of absorbing excess thermal energy from the food or beverage, thereby cooling the consumable material to a desired temperature and maintaining the material at the desired temperature for a considerable period of time. The container typically includes an outer insulating shell; an inner heat conducting liner and a phase change material (PCM). To facilitate heat transfer to and from a food or beverage stored in the container, the PCM is commonly disposed between the outer insulating shell and the inner heat conducting liner and positioned in thermal contact with the inner heat conducting liner. The PCM may include a diol diester having a melting point of about 30 to 90° C."

http://www.freepatentsonline.com/20160215194.pdf

Patent application: Charge air cooler and associated charge air circuit

Ben Welter - Thursday, July 28, 2016

Valeo patent drawingU.S. patent application 20160216037 (applicant Valeo Systemes Thermiques, France):

"The present invention relates to a charge air cooler (7) intended to be placed upstream from the combustion cylinder, said charge air coming from at least one turbocharger and intended to be supplied to the combustion cylinders of an internal combustion engine, said charge air cooler comprising one inlet container (70) for charge air, one outlet container for charge air and heat-exchange surfaces (72) between the charge air and a second heat-transfer fluid, at least the inlet container and/or the outlet container for charge air comprising a phase change material (15)."

http://www.freepatentsonline.com/20160216037.pdf

Research roundup: Energy storage technology review; U-shaped thermosyphon; multi-walled carbon nanotubes; more

Ben Welter - Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Energy storage in the energy transition context: A technology review [Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews]

Analysis and design of a drain water heat recovery storage unit based on PCM plates [Applied Energy]

Numerical simulation of the heat transfer characteristics of a U-shaped thermosyphon containing a PCM suspension [Applied Thermal Engineering]

Solidification of a PCM with Nanoparticles in Triplex-Tube Thermal Energy Storage System [Applied Thermal Engineering]

Experimental and computational evaluation of phase change materials for handheld computing [IEEE Intersociety Conference on Thermal and Thermomechanical Phenomena in Electronic Systems]

Experimental investigation of transient thermal response of phase change material embedded by graphene nanoparticles in energy storage module [IEEE Intersociety Conference on Thermal and Thermomechanical Phenomena in Electronic Systems]

Numerical study on the melting thermal characteristics of a microencapsulated phase change plate [Numerical Heat Transfer, Part A: Applications: An International Journal of Computation and Methodology]

Thermal property investigation of multi walled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs) embedded Phase Change Materials (PCMs) [IEEE Intersociety Conference on Thermal and Thermomechanical Phenomena in Electronic Systems]

Low-grade heat collection from a latent heat thermal energy storage unit [IEEE Intersociety Conference on Thermal and Thermomechanical Phenomena in Electronic Systems]

Performance enhancement of fin attached ice-on-coil type thermal storage tank for different fin orientations using constrained and unconstrained simulations [Heat and Mass Transfer]

Patent application: Lumbar brace

Ben Welter - Tuesday, July 26, 2016

U.S. patent application drawing of lumbar brace

U.S. patent application 20160206467 (applicant Corflex Inc., Manchester, N.H.):

"An adjustable lumbar support system with independent lacer guides and a hinged portion. An adjustable lumbar support system having phase change material [10, below] and/or removable stays. An adjustable lumbar support system having one or more panels, with or without perforations, to provide for improved adjustability for patient comfort and compliance. An adjustable lumbar support system having a pleated or quilted central portion."

http://www.freepatentsonline.com/20160206467.pdf

PCM coaster is designed to keep canned beer cold

Ben Welter - Monday, July 25, 2016

Two Hungarians are working to raise $25,000 on Indiegogo to fund development of BoozePad, an aluminum-and-plastic coaster designed to keep canned beer and other beverages cold. Inside is a phase change material of their own creation, a salt-and-water paste with a freeze point of minus 14 to 18 degrees Celsius.

Boozepad photoIn an email interview, Viktor Kurucz and Zsombor Kaló said similar products on the market only slow warming: "BoozePad is the only device [we've tested] that effectively cools the beer and keeps the preferred low temperature." 

They added: "BoozePad is absolutely local: idea, testings, design and development to the prototype has all been happened within the boundaries of Budapest. Mass production will take place also locally. It is important for us to supervise the production personally, and diminish the biological footprint."

A single BoozePad costs $10, with delivery promised in October. With a month to go, the Indiegogo campaign has raised a little over $2,000, well short of the team's $25,000 goal.

https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/boozepad-keep-your-beer-cool-while-you-drink-it--3#/

Patent application: Thermal storage units and methods of making and using them

Ben Welter - Monday, July 25, 2016

U.S. patent application 20160209124 (applicant University of Texas Board of Regents):

"Sugar alcohol blends of galactitol and mannitol and compositions comprising such blends are disclosed as phase change materials (PCMs). A method of forming carbon nanotubes on a carbon substrate is described. Carbon substrates with carbon nanotubes, in particular, conformal layers of carbon nanotubes on carbon substrates, are also disclosed, as are methods of making and using these materials. Thermal storage units are also provided. The thermal storage units can comprise a heat exchange path through which a heat exchange medium flows, and a thermal storage medium in thermal contact with the heat exchange path."

http://www.freepatentsonline.com/20160209124.pdf

PCM briefing: Job openings at ARPA-E; PCM heat exchanger arrives at space station

Ben Welter - Saturday, July 23, 2016

Peli BioThermal has expanded its temperature-control packaging operations in Asia, teaming up with Pharmaserv Express of the Philippines and CMC Element of China.

Anne J. McNeil, a chemistry professor at the University of Michigan, is among the growing number of academics who use the Slack messaging app to communicate with team members. In a typical week, her team uses the software to send about 400 messages and 70 files. The advantages over e-mail: speed and searchability.

• Thermal storage pioneer CALMAC has posted a new white paper: "Ice Storage or Chilled Water Storage. Which one is right for the job?

• Eight years after construction began, Abu Dhabi's vision for a bustling, energy-efficient city in the desert remains largely unrealized. Masdar City, a planned community initially designed to accommodate 50,000 citizens, sits mostly empty, with only a few hundred residents. French photographer Etienne Malapert has documented the futuristic city's eerie landscape.

ARPA-E is accepting applications for two-year fellowships in Washington, D.C. ARPA-E fellows focus on identifying breakthrough energy technologies through technical and economic analyses. The application deadline is Sept. 1, 2016. The agency also has openings for program directors and technology-to-market advisors.

NASA's experimental PCM heat exchanger arrived at the International Space Station this week.

Plaza Provision Co., a food distributor based in Puerto Rico, has purchased its fourth thermal energy storage system from Viking Cold Solutions. Houston-based Viking says the three PCM-based systems installed earlier have saved Plaza Provision $650,000 in energy costs since 2010.

• The American Chemistry Council’s Specialty Chemicals Market Volume Index fell by 0.4% in June, the third consecutive monthly decline for the U.S. market.

Patent application: Dimensionally stable PCM and a continuous process for making same

Ben Welter - Friday, July 22, 2016

U.S. patent application 20160208155 (applicant Microtek Laboratories Inc., Dayton, Ohio):

"Methods for producing a dimensionally stable phase change material (PCM), and dimensionally stable PCMs are disclosed. The methods include providing a porous base material, mixing a phase change material having a polar functional group with a substance that increases the polar attraction of the phase change material for the porous base material to form a mixture thereof; and, thereafter, mixing the mixture with the porous base material until a selected saturation of phase change material in the porous base material is reached. The methods may include filtering the porous base material after the selected saturation is reached to form a cake of dimensionally stable PCM and, thereafter, reducing the size of the dimensionally stable PCM to an average mean particle size of about 10 to about 50 μm, or more preferably 20 to 30 μm."

http://www.freepatentsonline.com/20160208155.pdf