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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 monthly PCM newsletter. Or join the discussion on LinkedIn.

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PCM briefing: Borehole energy storage exceeding expectations; Masdar launches novel single-tank TES demonstration project

Ben Welter - Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Canada's Drake Landing, a large-scale solar community that uses borehole thermal energy storage to heat 52 single-family homes, has achieved up to 98 percent efficiency in recent years. The district heating system, now in its ninth year, combines garage-mounted solar panels with 144 boreholes, drilled 37 meters deep.

The Masdar Institute has initiated its concentrated solar power on demand demonstration project in Abu Dhabi. The aim is to show that the novel single-tank thermal energy storage system, which absorbs and stores thermal energy using molten salt, may prove to be more affordable and efficient than conventional two-tank systems.

AkzoNobel's potential purchase of BASF's industrial coatings business could put other chemical companies under pressure to re-structure their businesses, analysts say. Cheap oil means more cash is available for mergers and acquisitions.   

The team behind TheM, a PCM-powered thermal dining placemat, fell short of its goal of raising $30,000 on Indiegogo last fall. But the team is still plugging away on prototypes and hopes to develop a successful design by the end of February.

Ben-Gurion University of the Negev hosted the second board meeting of the European project INPATH-TES this week. Around 30 researchers from different countries participated in the meeting, representing the 22 partners in the project. 

Researchers at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health have created a safety database on 10,000 chemicals registered in Europe for predicting the toxicity of many of the 90,000 or more other substances in consumer products.

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