Opportunities to Apply Phase Change Materials to Building Enclosures: November 11, 2011
This webinar, presented by research team Fraunhofer Center for Sustainable Energy Systems (CSE), reviewed basic physical characteristics and thermal properties of phase change materials (PCMs) and provided guidance on how to effectively apply PCMs in buildings in the United States. PCMs as building materials components have the potential to achieve significant reductions in space cooling energy consumption and peak cooling loads.
Phase-change energy storage technology is the science to store thermal energy as sensible heat and latent heat for efficient temperature control. This hybrid storage increases the thermal storage capacity within a small volume of storage and thermal energy can be stored at a temperature of process application. The temperature of the phase-change material remains constant during it's phase-change as it absorbs or releases thermal energy.
Advantages of Phase-Change Energy Storage
- Store thermal energy at the temperature of process application
- Store thermal energy as latent heat which allows higher thermal energy storage capacity per unit weight or material without any change in temperature
- Store thermal energy from thermal energy source or electrical energy source when available and use when needed
- Stored thermal energy is portable and rechargeable
- Store natural thermal energy for facility heating and cooling needs. Reduced energy demand reduces facilities carbon footprint
- Store thermal energy during off demand hours and use during peak demand to save on energy cost and help stabilize grid load
- Shift of heating and cooling load also reduces peak time stress of heating and cooling equipment that can lead to reduced operating & maintenance cost.
- This technology would lead to sizing HVAC equipment for average load rather than peak load