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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.




Research roundup: Supercooling of salt hydrates; lauric acid/expanded perlite; ice thermal energy storage; more

Ben Welter - Monday, October 26, 2015

Experimental characterisation of sub-cooling in hydrated salt phase change materials [Applied Thermal Engineering]

Research on the preparation and properties of lauric acid/expanded perlite phase change materials [Energy and Buildings]

The potential of lightweight low-energy houses with hybrid adaptable thermal storage: comparing the performance of promising concepts [Energy and Buildings]

Ice thermal energy storage (ITES) for air-conditioning application in full and partial load operating modes [International Journal of Refrigeration]

Reproducibility of solidification and melting processes in a latent heat thermal storage tank [International Journal of Refrigeration]

PCM-based free cooling in buildings: A way forward

Ben Welter - Wednesday, October 07, 2015

A review of research on PCM-based free cooling in buildings suggests that increased thermal conductivity, wider governmental support and heightened public awareness are essential to wider adoption of the technology. Among the other conclusions by a team of researchers at two universities in India:

• The free-cooling concept is best suited for less humid and maximum diurnal temperature range regions. However, with careful design of heat exchangers along with dehumidification of air, free cooling can be effectively implemented even in warm and humid areas.

• By decreasing the inlet air temperature with optimal inlet air velocity, solidification time can be reduced and thus the PCM can be charged in less time.

• Supercooling can be reduced by adding nucleating agents but cannot be mitigated completely.

• Mapping of free-cooling potential zones and construction of large-scale demonstration projects are essential to making the technology commercially viable.

• Commercializing and mass implementation of free-cooling technology in residential sectors will curtail air conditioner use and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Research roundup: Reheating supercooled TES unit; phase inversion emulsification; nanoencapsulated PCM via Pickering emulsification; more

Ben Welter - Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Characteristic of Reheating Operation in Supercooled Thermal Energy Storage Unit for Hot Water Supply or Space Heating [Energy Procedia]

A Novel Method for the Preparation of Narrow-disperse Nanoencapsulated Phase Change Materials by Phase Inversion Emulsification and Suspension Polymerization [Industrial & Engineering Chemistry and Research]

Annual performance of a solar aided coal-fired power generation system (SACPG) with various solar field areas and thermal energy storage capacity [Applied Energy]

Optimal energy management of a building cooling system with thermal storage: A convex formulation [Symposium on Advanced Control of Chemical Processes] [pdf]

Nano-encapsulated PCM via Pickering Emulsification [Nature]

A review on the development of cool pavements to mitigate urban heat island effect [Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews]

Research roundup: PCM and night purge ventilation; seasonal cold storage; liquid cooling garment; galactitol for solar cookers; more

Ben Welter - Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Cooling load reduction in office buildings of hot-arid climate, combining phase change materials and night purge ventilation [Renewable Energy]

Mechanical response evaluation of microcapsules from different slurries [Renewable Energy]

A seasonal cold storage system based on separate type heat pipe for sustainable building cooling [Renewable Energy]

Ground source heat pumps as high efficient solutions for building space conditioning and for integration in smart grids [Energy Conversion and Management]

Experimental study on the performance of a liquid cooling garment with the application of MEPCMS [Energy Conversion and Management]

Pore-scale and volume-averaged numerical simulations of melting phase change heat transfer in finned metal foam [International Journal of Heat and Mass Transfer]

Galactitol as phase change material for latent heat storage of solar cookers: Investigating thermal behavior in bulk cycling [Solar Energy]

Energy and exergy performance assessments for latent heat thermal energy storage systems [Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews]

Enhancements in domestic refrigeration, approaching a sustainable refrigerator – A review [Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews]

Thermodynamic analysis and optimization of cascaded latent heat storage system for energy efficient utilization [Energy]

Tailoring Thermal Properties via Synergistic Effect in a Multifunctional Phase Change Composite Based on Methyl Stearate [Journal of Materiomics]

Study on functional and mechanical properties of cement mortar with graphite-modified microencapsulated phase-change materials [Energy and Buildings]

Research roundup: PCM wall optimization; photovoltaic PCM system; elimination of supercooling; more

Ben Welter - Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Phase change material wall optimization for heating using metamodeling [Energy and Buildings]

Indoor Characterisation of a Photovoltaic/ Thermal Phase Change Material System [Energy Procedia]

Morphing tree structures for latent thermal energy storage [Journal of Applied Physics]

PCM Thermal Energy Storage in Buildings: Experimental Study and Applications [Energy Procedia]

Supercooling elimination of phase change materials (PCMs) microcapsules [Energy]

Experimental Study on the Performance of RT 25 to be Used as Ambient Energy Storage [Energy Procedia]