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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 weekly PCM newsletter. Or join the discussion on LinkedIn.

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PCM briefing: New paper on DSC/T-history; 'space-agey' PCM mats at Rocky Mountain Institute

Ben Welter - Tuesday, January 05, 2016

In a new technical paper on puretemp.com, Dr. Mohammed Farid of the University of Auckland explains the complementary aspects of two methods of measuring the melting and freezing ranges of PCMs: differential scanning calorimetry and the T-history method.

The Rocky Mountain Institute's new 15,600-square-foot Innovation Center in Basalt, Colo., features "space-agey" phase change thermal mats behind the drywall. The BioPCM mats are made by Phase Change Energy Solutions of Asheboro, N.C.

Four elements have been added to the periodic table, finally completing the table’s seventh row. The new synthetic elements – 113, 115, 117 and 118 – will be officially named by the teams that discovered them in the coming months.

Schoeller Textil AG's new Cosmopolitan textile collection includes warming and cooling fabrics that incorporate phase change materials.

PureTemp phase change material is now available in high-performance Vesl devices

Ben Welter - Tuesday, December 15, 2015

In partnership with Entropy Solutions, Vesl LLC now offers PureTemp phase change material in encapsulated form. Three new patent-pending containment solutions – BlockVesl, MacroVesl and MicroVesl – feature an enhanced surface-area-to-mass ratio. That means faster energy exchange and superior PureTemp performance.

BlockVeslBlockVesl

The stackable BlockVesl is a precisely engineered PCM device with more than 3,200 square centimeters of surface area. It is suited to a wide range of applications, including refrigeration, air conditioning, heat recovery and heat storage. One BlockVesl can store up to 200,000 joules of energy depending on the PCM selected.

MacroVeslMacroVesl

The 305mm-diameter MacroVesl is a multi-chambered, high-capacity sphere with more than 24,600 square centimeters of surface area. That’s more than 16 times the surface area of a typical sphere of the same diameter. It is suited to a wide range of applications, including air conditioning, heat recovery and thermal energy storage.

MicroVesl

The MicroVesl features a multi-layered polymer structure chosen for its ideal barrier properties. The MicroVesl, now available in a diameter of 18.5 mm, can be made in a range of sizes and is ideal for use in refrigeration, air conditioning, thermal energy storage and many other applications.

To learn more, visit veslpcm.com.

Entropy Solutions adds PureTemp 7 to its line of biobased PCMs

Ben Welter - Friday, November 06, 2015

Entropy Solutions has added PureTemp 7 to its lineup of more than two dozen biobased, renewable phase change materials. With a melt point of 7º Celsius and a heat storage capacity of 185 joules per gram, PureTemp 7 is designed to fully solidify in a refrigerator, making it suitable for use in freezer-less settings. Potential applications include shipping, cold storage and air conditioning. PureTemp 7 will be available beginning in December 2015.

http://www.puretemp.com/stories/puretemp-7-tds

Puma's latest TitanTour golf shoe features Ignite foam, Outlast phase change technology

Ben Welter - Thursday, October 29, 2015

Puma TitanTour IgniteLike its predecessor, the latest version of Puma's TitanTour golf shoe features temperature-regulating phase change material in its lining. The Outlast technology is designed to keep the wearer comfortable by absorbing, storing and releasing heat as conditions demand. The new TitanTour Ignite also uses a liquid polyurethane blend during the manufacturing process to form a cushioned midsole between the outsole and the foot. The shoes retail for $180 and up.

http://www.golfdigest.com/story/pumas-titantour-golf-shoes-are-the-latest-in-a-market-inspired-by-running-shoes

High-tech clothier Ministry of Supply says profitability is on the horizon

Ben Welter - Friday, October 23, 2015

Ministry of Supply shirtMinistry of Supply, the Boston startup known for integrating phase change material in its high-tech menswear, plans to become profitable as soon as next year, the Boston Business Journal reports. The five-year-old company recently landed $1.5 million in additional funding from undisclosed investors, co-founder Kit Hickey said. Funding to date for the company now stands at more than $6 million.

http://upstart.bizjournals.com/companies/rebel-brands/2015/10/20/profitability-new-technology-in-the-works-for-this.html

Adjustable-temperature Ember mug features PCM, charging pad, bluetooth

Ben Welter - Thursday, October 22, 2015

Ember coffee mugAre you a demanding coffee drinker? You might be smitten by Ember Technologies' temperature-adjustable mug, now available for pre-order on Indiegogo. The Ember mug is packed with technical features designed to ensure that your coffee (or tea, or cocoa, or tomato bisque) stays at just the right temperature for hours:

  • "Space-grade" thermal insulation
  • Stainless-steel inner vessel
  • "Phase change cooling system"
  • Microprocessor-controlled heating system
  • High-capacity battery
  • Charging pad

You can control the temperature by twisting the base – or use the mobile app to remotely adjust the temperature, save presets for different drinks, name your mug and "select frequency and types of notifications." Not sure about that last bit. I get enough notifications as it is without adding the status of my beverage to the list.

All that technology doesn't come cheap. The 12-ounce mug is expected to retail for $149; you can order one now for $129. Estimated delivery: April 2016. In just two days, the Indiegogo campaign has raised $104,653, more than twice its goal.  

https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/ember-temperature-adjustable-mug#

Creators of food-warming mat seek funding on IndieGoGo

Ben Welter - Tuesday, October 06, 2015

TheM food-warming mat

The creators of a PCM-laden mat designed to keep food warm for up to an hour have launched an IndieGoGo campaign to raise funds for production and distribution.

The thermal mat, dubbed TheM, uses Outlast phase change technology to absorb and store heat from a hot dish, and then release it back to the dish as needed to keep food at 150º F. The octagonal 8-inch mat weighs less than 2 pounds and is less than a quarter-inch thick. It remains cool to the touch as it absorbs and releases heat. 

https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/thermal-dining-place-mats-called-them

Cold Chain Technologies to unveil new pallet shipping system

Ben Welter - Thursday, October 01, 2015

Cold Chain Technologies plans to introduce a new pallet shipping system, the KoolTemp GTS Evolution 1400L, at next week's Cold Chain GDP & Temperature Management Logistics Global Forum in Boston.

The Holliston, Mass., company says the 1,400-liter system is designed for high-value, palletized pharmaceuticals and other health care products and offers five-plus days of extreme temperature protection. The system features Koolit advanced phase change material and KoolDesigns thermal modeling. The company says the system is qualified for 2-8º C (available now), controlled room temperature (available Q4) and frozen (available Q1 2016) applications.

The company will also preview its newest innovations, including Koolit advanced PCM gel refrigerants, the KoolTemp GTS Enshield PCM pallet cover and a reusable version of the GTS Excel qualified shipping system.

http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20150930006553/en/Cold-Chain-Technologies-Introduces-KoolTemp%C2%AE-GTS-Evolution

Pelican BioThermal launches Chronos Express single-use shipper

Ben Welter - Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Chronos Express shipperPelican BioThermal has unveiled Chronos Express, a new single-use shipper that uses phase change material. 

The shippers are designed to ensure the safe transport of pharmaceuticals, tissue, diagnostics/clinical trials, vaccines and blood samples. They cover temperature ranges +2C to +8C and +15C to +25C and come in five sizes: 6, 12, 28, 56 and 96 liters. They will be available to order in mid-October.

A company press release identifies the PCM as "CoolPhase" but does not provide details. The term is not mentioned on Pelican BioThermal's website and is not listed in the U.S. trademark database.  

“This launch follows our successful introduction of Chronos Advance to the global market," said David Williams, president of Pelican BioThermal. "Chronos Express offers the same high performance plus the speed and ease with which the product can be assembled, making for a cost-effective option.”

http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20150922006432/en

Catlike's Mixino bicycle helmet features Outlast padding

Ben Welter - Thursday, August 20, 2015

Catlike Mixino bike helmetCatlike's top-of-the-line Mixino bicycle helmet, whose well-perforated shell is familiar to European racers and fans, is available in the United States this year. Outlast padding inside the $300 helmet is infused with phase change material to absorb and release heat as needed to keep the rider comfortable. 

BikeRumor.com's Cory Benson weighs in after testing the helmet for more than six months: 

"In the hottest weather (35°C+) the top of my head stayed cool enough (although did need sunscreen) and the pads kept the sweat on my brow mostly in check. I still ended up sweating a good bit on harder efforts, but my head never felt hot."

http://www.bikerumor.com/2015/08/20/review-airy-catlike-mixino-helmet-plus-snap-on-aero-and-rain-shells/