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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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Research roundup: Organogel; mobilized thermal storage container; passive solar wall

Ben Welter - Thursday, February 05, 2015

  • Organogel used as phase change material: solvent effects on structure, leakage and thermal performance [RSC Advances]

  • Experimental study on melting and solidification of phase change material in indirect contact mobilized thermal energy storage container [Chemical Industry and Engineering Progress]

  • Thermal behavior of a passive solar wall with silica aerogel and phase change materials [Proceedings of Energy Forum on Advanced Building Skins]

  • Effect of internal void placement on the heat transfer performance – Encapsulated phase change material for energy storage [Renewable Energy]
  • Project Exergy aims to tap cloud computing's excess heat

    Ben Welter - Tuesday, February 03, 2015

    Lawrence OrsiniCloud-based data centers generate a lot of excess heat. Can it be harnessed to heat homes? New York inventor Lawrence Orsini thinks so. He has proposed installing distributed supercomputers in homes and offices to reduce heating bills and energy consumption. Orsini's Project Exergy seeks to raise $100,000 on Kickstarter. 

    A prototype of the heat storage system uses a water tank. A future version will use phase change material to store the heat.

    Research roundup: Porous MgO material; gravity-assisted heat pipe; double-skin facade; more

    Ben Welter - Monday, February 02, 2015

  • Porous MgO Material with Ultrahigh Surface Area as the Matrix for Phase Change Composite [Thermochimica Acta]

  • Study on the thermal storage performance of a gravity-assisted heat-pipe thermal storage unit with granular high-temperature phase-change materials [Energy]

  • Energy performance of a ventilated double skin facade with PCM under different climates [Energy and Buildings]

  • Multi-mode heat transfer analysis during freezing of an encapsulated storage medium [International Journal of Heat and Mass Transfer]

  • Fabrication and Performances of Microencapsulated Palmitic Acid with Enhanced Thermal Properties [Energy Fuels]

  • Research roundup: Melamine resin shell; frustum-shaped storage units; more

    Ben Welter - Monday, February 02, 2015

  • Microencapsulation mechanism and size control of fragrance microcapsules with melamine resin shell [Colloids and Surfaces]

  • Enhanced heat transfer for PCM melting in the frustum-shaped unit with multiple PCMs [Journal of Thermal Analysis and Calorimetry]

  • Diurnal thermal analysis of microencapsulated PCM-concrete composite walls [Energy Conversion and Management]

  • Using Generalized Integral Transforms to solve a perturbation model for a packed bed thermal energy storage tank [International Journal of Heat and Mass Transfer]

  • Numerical modeling of aquifer thermal energy efficiency under regional groundwater flow: a case study at Oslo Airport [Hydrology Research]

  • Global thermal energy storage capacity expected to triple by 2020

    Ben Welter - Friday, January 23, 2015

    The global thermal energy storage capacity, which topped 2,000 megawatts in 2013, is expected to surpass 6,000 megawatts by 2020, according to the latest report from Transparency Market Research.

    "Thermal energy storage systems," the report notes, "stock up energy for later use, employing water, ice-slush tanks, rock from the bedrock layer, aquifers, insulated lined pits and eutectic, phase-changing materials." The report lists CALMAC, EVAPCO, Chicago Bridge & Iron and Goss Engineering as key players in the market.

    Sensible heat storage, which now dominates the market, is expected to lose share to latent storage technologies such as PCMs, which have the advantage of higher energy storage density.

    http://www.transparencymarketresearch.com/pressrelease/thermal-energy-storage-market.htm

    Cooling system expected to save Michigan complex $12,000 a month

    Ben Welter - Wednesday, January 21, 2015

    CALMAC IceBank tanks at government complex in Dimondale, Mich.

    Business Energy's William Atkinson takes a look at the installation of CALMAC IceBank tanks at a state-owned office and warehouse complex in Dimondale, Mich. The cooling system is expected to save the state $12,000 a month in energy costs. The concept is simple: Make ice overnight, when the cost of electricity is lower, and store it for use during the day.

    “CALMAC’s energy storage technology has allows us to make our system extremely flexible in order to meet changing heating and cooling needs,” said Scott Davis, utility supervisor at the complex. “Utilizing cheaper nighttime energy has always been an attractive opportunity, especially for a large complex like ours. Now it is a reality."

    http://www.businessenergy.net/DE/articles/28037.aspx

    Research roundup: Composite PCM in cement-paste panel; PCM in solar greenhouse; more

    Ben Welter - Tuesday, January 20, 2015

  • Composite of Coal-Series Kaolinite and Capric–Lauric Acid as Form-Stable Phase Change Material [Energy Technology]

  • Thermal Environment Regulating Effects of Phase Change Material in Chinese Style Solar Greenhouse [Energy Procedia]

  • Performance Demonstration and Evaluation of the Synergetic Application of Thermochromic Window and Phase Change Material in Passive Buildings [Energy Procedia]

  • Theoretical Analysis on the Solid Sensible and Latent Heat Storage in Building Cooling Heating and Power Systems [Energy Procedia]

  • Comparison of Thermal Performance of BCHP System with Latent Thermal Energy Storage in Different Locations [Energy Procedia]

  • Influence of Position of Thermal Energy Storage with Different Effectiveness on the Performance of BCHP System [Energy Procedia]

  • Optimizing the Performance of Ice-storage Systems in Electricity Load Management Through a Credit Mechanism: An Analytical Work for Jiangsu, China [Energy Procedia]

  • On the Natural Convection Enhancement of Heat Transfer during Phase Transition Processes of Solid-liquid Phase Change Materials [Energy Procedia]
  • Research roundup: Paraffin in copper foam; microencapsulated paraffin with poly shell; more

    Ben Welter - Monday, January 12, 2015

  • Experimental analysis of phase change phenomenon of paraffin waxes embedded in copper foams [International Journal of Thermal Sciences]

  • Preparation and characterization of flame retardant phase change materials by microencapsulated paraffin and diethyl ethylphosphonate with poly (methacrylic acid-co-ethyl methacrylate) shell [Journal of Applied Polymer Science]

  • Effect of heating position on thermal energy storage in cavity with/without open-cell metallic foams [Experimental Heat Transfer]

  • Thermal impact of aquifer thermal energy storage systems: a case study in the Netherlands, combining monitoring and modeling [Hydrogeology Journal]