Thermal Behavior of Mixtures of Perlite and Phase Change Materials in a Simulated Climate

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Carefully controlled and well documented experiments have been done for two candidate configurations to control the heat load on a conditioned space. The 2:1 PCM/perlite mixture and the 6:1 PCM/perlite mixture, both on a weight basis, accomplished thermal control. The 2:1 system seemed to have enough PCM to be effective and involve a much larger fraction of its PCM in diurnal freezing and melting than the 6:1 system. It is a good starting point for engineering design of an optimum thermal control system. The results from the 2:1 system were reproduced with the computer program HEATING to prove that we ... continued below

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30 Pages

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Childs, K.W.; Childs, P.W.; Christian, J.E. & Petrie, T.W. May 1, 1995.

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Description

Carefully controlled and well documented experiments have been done for two candidate configurations to control the heat load on a conditioned space. The 2:1 PCM/perlite mixture and the 6:1 PCM/perlite mixture, both on a weight basis, accomplished thermal control. The 2:1 system seemed to have enough PCM to be effective and involve a much larger fraction of its PCM in diurnal freezing and melting than the 6:1 system. It is a good starting point for engineering design of an optimum thermal control system. The results from the 2:1 system were reproduced with the computer program HEATING to prove that we know the relevant mechanisms and thermophysical properties of the PCM used in the system. Even without a model for the supersaturation and hysteresis that this material exhibited, HEATING reproduced the heat fluxes to the conditioned space in the experiments accurately enough to mirror the good thermal control performance of the system. The modified sensible heat capacity that was used in HEATING is a handy way to account for phase change effects and could be used in a subroutine to compute hourly phase change effects for whole building models like DOE-2. The experiments were done with PCM/perlite mixtures sealed in small methylmethacrylate boxes and covered top and bottom by XPS. The boxes allowed precise placement of the instrumentation used to follow the phase change effects. The XPS gave high R-value per unit thickness. A more practical prototype configuration such as PCM/perlite hermetically sealed in plastic pouches between layers of batts or blown-in insulation should be tested over a larger cross section. A good candidate is the whole attic cavity of the manufactured home test section used in the present work. Use of a PCM that does not exhibit supersaturation and hysteresis would make interpretation of the results easier. If the results of the larger scale test areas are as encouraging as the test cell results, a whole house model with a phase change algorithm should be constructed to optimize the configuration for the climate in which it will perform.

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30 Pages

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  • Other: DE00002741
  • Report No.: ORNL/M-6639
  • Grant Number: AC05-96OR22464
  • DOI: 10.2172/2741 | External Link
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 2741
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc667932

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  • May 1, 1995

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  • June 29, 2015, 9:42 p.m.

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  • Aug. 30, 2016, 8:13 p.m.

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Childs, K.W.; Childs, P.W.; Christian, J.E. & Petrie, T.W. Thermal Behavior of Mixtures of Perlite and Phase Change Materials in a Simulated Climate, report, May 1, 1995; United States. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc667932/: accessed September 19, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.