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Phase Change Materials for Thermal Energy Storage Applications 2022

A special issue of Energies (ISSN 1996-1073). This special issue belongs to the section "G2: Phase Change Materials for Energy Storage".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 March 2023) | Viewed by 14566

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor

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Guest Editor
Department of Environmental Engineering (DIAm), University of Calabria, 87036 Rende, Italy
Interests: building physics; energy efficiency; indoor monitoring; occupant behavior; energy modeling; renewable energy
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Successful implementation of new technologies that rely on the use of renewable energy requires the use of thermal energy storage to reduce the mismatch between energy supply and demand. The use of phase change materials is an attractive option to achieve high energy storage density and near-isothermal power supply. Phase change materials can be used for thermal energy storage at different temperature levels in many applications, both in buildings and in industry. The proper design and implementation of the system, its economic feasibility, as well as the reliability of system control strategies are key aspects related to the use of thermal energy storage through phase change materials. This Special Issue aims to encourage researchers to submit innovative proposals and solutions to address one or more of the abovementioned aspects.

Dr. Gabriel Zsembinszki
Dr. Emiliano Borri
Prof. Dr. Marilena De Simone
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Energies is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  •  thermal energy storage
  •  phase change materials
  •  renewable energy
  •  energy efficiency
  •  economic feasibility
  •  energy savings
  •  experimental analysis
  •  numerical simulations

Related Special Issue

Published Papers (7 papers)

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Research

Jump to: Review

27 pages, 5448 KiB  
Article
Experiments and Modeling of Solid–Solid Phase Change Material-Loaded Plaster to Enhance Building Energy Efficiency
by Girolama Airò Farulla, Vincenza Brancato, Valeria Palomba, Yannan Zhang, Giuseppe E. Dino and Andrea Frazzica
Energies 2023, 16(5), 2384; https://doi.org/10.3390/en16052384 - 2 Mar 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1318
Abstract
In this paper, cement mortar IN200 integrated with solid–solid PlusIce X25 commercial PCM was fully characterized for the first time via experimental tests and numerical simulations. An experimental setup was designed and built to evaluate the thermal performance of the composite. Experimental results [...] Read more.
In this paper, cement mortar IN200 integrated with solid–solid PlusIce X25 commercial PCM was fully characterized for the first time via experimental tests and numerical simulations. An experimental setup was designed and built to evaluate the thermal performance of the composite. Experimental results confirmed the expected advantages of the PCM-loaded plaster in terms of inner surface temperature, inbound heat flux reduction, and the enhanced damping effect on the average temperature. The experimental results were used to validate and calibrate a finite element model implemented in COMSOL Multiphysics® 5.6. The model was adopted to carry out a parametric analysis assessing the influence of PCM mass fraction, phase transition temperature, and PCM mortar thickness. The composite thickness was the most influential parameter, resulting in an energy saving increase from 3.29% to 72.72% as it was increased from 10 mm to 30 mm. Moreover, the model was used in a set of dynamic simulations, reproducing real Mediterranean climatic conditions to capture the transition process for a long period in buildings. The PCM mortar located on the interior side exhibited the highest reduction in both heat flux and inner surface temperature, representing a simple approach to achieving the best thermal comfort conditions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Phase Change Materials for Thermal Energy Storage Applications 2022)
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14 pages, 4345 KiB  
Article
Investigation of the Heat Storage Capacity and Storage Dynamics of a Novel Polymeric Macro-Encapsulated Core-Shell Particle Using a Paraffinic Core
by Matthias Singer, Michael Fischlschweiger and Tim Zeiner
Energies 2023, 16(2), 957; https://doi.org/10.3390/en16020957 - 14 Jan 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1110
Abstract
Thermal energy storages represent important devices for the decarbonisation of heat; hence, enabling a circular economy. Hereby, important tasks are the optimisation of thermal losses and providing a tuneable storage capacity, as well as tuneable storage dynamics for thermal energy storage modules which [...] Read more.
Thermal energy storages represent important devices for the decarbonisation of heat; hence, enabling a circular economy. Hereby, important tasks are the optimisation of thermal losses and providing a tuneable storage capacity, as well as tuneable storage dynamics for thermal energy storage modules which are composed of either sensible or phase change-based heat storage materials. The thermal storage capacity and the storage dynamics behaviour are crucial for fulfilling certain application requirements. In this work, a novel macro-encapsulated and spherical heat storage core-shell structure is presented and embedded in a supercritical ammonia working fluid flow field. The core of the macro-capsule is built by an organic low molecular weight substance showing a solid–liquid phase transition in a respective temperature zone, where the shell structure is made of polyvinylidene fluoride. Due to the direct coupling of computational fluid dynamics and the simulation of the phase transition of the core material, the influence of the working fluid flow field and shell thickness on the time evolution of temperature, heat transfer coefficients, and accumulated heat storage is investigated for this newly designed material system. It is shown that due to the mixed sensible and phase change storage character, the shell architecture and the working fluid flow field, the heat storage capacity and the storage dynamics can be systematically tuned. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Phase Change Materials for Thermal Energy Storage Applications 2022)
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17 pages, 5648 KiB  
Article
An Experimental Study of the Heat Storage and the Discharge Performance and an Economic Performance Analysis of a Flat Plate Phase Change Material (PCM) Storage Tank
by Juan Zhao, Junmei Gao, Junhui Liao, Botao Zhou, Yifei Bai and Tianwei Qiang
Energies 2022, 15(11), 4023; https://doi.org/10.3390/en15114023 - 30 May 2022
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 1763
Abstract
Solar heating technology has the advantages of being high efficiency, energy-saving, and environment protecting; however, the instability of solar energy and its mismatch with the variation characteristics of building heat load have caused great difficulties in the design and the efficient operation strategy [...] Read more.
Solar heating technology has the advantages of being high efficiency, energy-saving, and environment protecting; however, the instability of solar energy and its mismatch with the variation characteristics of building heat load have caused great difficulties in the design and the efficient operation strategy of a solar system. A heat storage tank is an important part of a solar hot water system. In order to improve system efficiency, this paper proposes a flat plate PCM storage tank, establishes a mathematical model, and conducts experimental verification under different working conditions. Experiments show that in the heat storage process, the phase change material (PCM) only accounts for less than 20% of the space of the PCM storage tank, and its heat storage can reach 50% of the total heat storage of the tank. In the discharge process, the water temperature of the ordinary tank decreases by 20 °C within 1.5 h, and the phase change process lasts approximately 3 h, with the water temperature remaining at 45~50 °C during this period. In the natural cooling process, the heat discharge of the two water tanks at night was similar, while the temperature of the ordinary water tank decreased by 12 °C and that of the phase change water tank decreased by 7 °C. By simulating the dynamic simulation model of the composite solar phase change thermal storage combined with an air-cooled heat pump system, the results show that the solar heating system with a PCM storage tank (SHS-PCM) saves 34% more energy than a solar heating system with a common tank (SHS-without PCM), and the volume of the PCM storage tank is reduced to 1/5 of the ordinary tank. The investment payback period method of energy saving reconstruction is used to analyze the economy of the SHS-PCM and the SHS-without PCM, the initial investment cost of the SHS-PCM is CNY 9858 higher than the SHS-without PCM, but the annual operation cost is saved by CNY 12,100, and the project investment payback period is 0.81 years, which has energy-saving potential and economic benefits. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Phase Change Materials for Thermal Energy Storage Applications 2022)
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Review

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39 pages, 3811 KiB  
Review
Low-Temperature Applications of Phase Change Materials for Energy Storage: A Descriptive Review
by Jesus Fernando Hinojosa, Saul Fernando Moreno and Victor Manuel Maytorena
Energies 2023, 16(7), 3078; https://doi.org/10.3390/en16073078 - 28 Mar 2023
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 2932
Abstract
Thermal storage is very relevant for technologies that make thermal use of solar energy, as well as energy savings in buildings. Phase change materials (PCMs) are positioned as an attractive alternative to storing thermal energy. This review provides an extensive and comprehensive overview [...] Read more.
Thermal storage is very relevant for technologies that make thermal use of solar energy, as well as energy savings in buildings. Phase change materials (PCMs) are positioned as an attractive alternative to storing thermal energy. This review provides an extensive and comprehensive overview of recent investigations on integrating PCMs in the following low-temperature applications: building envelopes, passive systems in buildings, solar collectors, solar photovoltaic systems, and solar desalination systems. Moreover, techniques for improving heat transfer in PCM systems are described. All applications studies indicate that all applications improve their performance when applying a PCM. One of the most beneficiated technologies is the combined PV-Thermal systems (PVT), where some authors reported an increase in overall efficiency greater than 40%. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Phase Change Materials for Thermal Energy Storage Applications 2022)
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24 pages, 4880 KiB  
Review
Small-Scale Phase Change Materials in Low-Temperature Applications: A Review
by Leland Weiss and Ramanshu Jha
Energies 2023, 16(6), 2841; https://doi.org/10.3390/en16062841 - 18 Mar 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2178
Abstract
Significant efforts have explored the field of Phase Change Materials (PCMs) for various applications. Research and real-world applications explore length scales that range from infrastructure to micro systems. A commonality of these efforts is the desire to utilize the phase change capability of [...] Read more.
Significant efforts have explored the field of Phase Change Materials (PCMs) for various applications. Research and real-world applications explore length scales that range from infrastructure to micro systems. A commonality of these efforts is the desire to utilize the phase change capability of the PCM to provide a steady temperature heat sink for thermal storage. Smaller scale efforts and materials are presented in this present review. A general challenge to the use of these PCMs regardless of application is the low thermal conductivity present as a baseline material property. Efforts to improve thermal conductivity have included the addition of underlying metal foam structures, heat pipes, or metallic fins inserted into the base PCM. Other efforts have investigated alterations to the base materials themselves by employing additives such as graphite to supplement thermal performance. Other additives are used to obtain form stability in the PCM as it melts. While the field of PCM research has been well established, the use of new materials and approaches that employ the use of natural materials continues to move research forward. This review captures significant efforts and presents a thoughtful comparison of common themes across centimeter and smaller-scale PCM use. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Phase Change Materials for Thermal Energy Storage Applications 2022)
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27 pages, 6513 KiB  
Review
Recent Progress and Challenges in MXene-Based Phase Change Material for Solar and Thermal Energy Applications
by Hafiz Taimoor Ahmed Awan, Laveet Kumar, Weng Pin Wong, Rashmi Walvekar and Mohammad Khalid
Energies 2023, 16(4), 1977; https://doi.org/10.3390/en16041977 - 16 Feb 2023
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 2237
Abstract
Energy storage is becoming a critical issue due to the diminishing availability of fossil fuels and the intermittent nature of current renewable energy sources. As a result, thermal management (TM) and thermal energy systems have gained significant attention due to their crucial roles [...] Read more.
Energy storage is becoming a critical issue due to the diminishing availability of fossil fuels and the intermittent nature of current renewable energy sources. As a result, thermal management (TM) and thermal energy systems have gained significant attention due to their crucial roles in various industries. Among the different TM materials, MXenes, a member of the transition metal carbide/nitride family, have emerged as a promising material due to their unique 2D nanostructure, changeable surface chemistry, high electrical/thermal conductivity, light absorptivity, and low infrared emissivity. This review outlines the synthesis methods of MXenes and their various features and applications in thermal management. These 2D materials exhibit outstanding optical and thermal properties, making them suitable for thermal energy generation and storage. The study also covers the potential applications of MXene in the desalination industry, hybrid photovoltaic thermal systems, solar energy storage, electronics, and other thermal management related industries. The findings suggest that MXene-based TM materials have remarkable features that significantly influence thermal energy storage and conversion and present opportunities for further research in efficiently using these materials. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Phase Change Materials for Thermal Energy Storage Applications 2022)
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23 pages, 2537 KiB  
Review
Phase Change Materials Energy Storage Enhancement Schemes and Implementing the Lattice Boltzmann Method for Simulations: A Review
by Milad Shirbani, Majid Siavashi and Mehdi Bidabadi
Energies 2023, 16(3), 1059; https://doi.org/10.3390/en16031059 - 18 Jan 2023
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1727
Abstract
Utilizing phase change materials (PCMs) is one of the most effective methods of storing thermal energy and is gaining popularity in renewable energy systems. In order to analyze PCM performance, various numerical methods have been deployed to study the transient behaviour during phase [...] Read more.
Utilizing phase change materials (PCMs) is one of the most effective methods of storing thermal energy and is gaining popularity in renewable energy systems. In order to analyze PCM performance, various numerical methods have been deployed to study the transient behaviour during phase changes. PCMs’ low thermal conductivity prevents their use as pure PCMs in industrial applications. There are various efficient methods of enhancing PCM thermal conductivity, which are addressed in this article. On the other hand, the lattice Boltzmann method (LBM) is very inclusive in the numerical simulation of complex fluid flows, thermal transport, and chemical interactions because of its ability to simply represent various complex physical phenomena, suitability for parallel programming, and easy coding and implementation. Many numerical studies have been conducted on PCMs using the LBM. This study aims to review these studies and categorize them in a way so that one may thoroughly understand the LBM’s capabilities in the simulation of PCM-related investigations. First, PCM characteristics and applications are presented, then the LBM implementation in PCM problems is addressed. Afterward, the fabrication and types of PCMs are mentioned. Next, the improvement of thermal energy storage methods of PCMs is stated. Furthermore, governing equations are reviewed. Lastly, the opportunities and challenges of the LBM in PCMs are discussed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Phase Change Materials for Thermal Energy Storage Applications 2022)
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