Technical Briefs

Enhance the Thermal Storage of Cement-Based Composites With Phase Change Materials and Carbon Nanotubes

[+] Author and Article Information
Baoguo Han

Department of Mechanical and Energy Engineering,
University of North Texas,
Denton, TX 76203;
School of Civil Engineering, Dalian University of Technology,
Dalian 116024, China

Kun Zhang

Department of Mechanical and Energy Engineering,
University of North Texas,
Denton, TX 76203;
School of Civil and Safety Engineering,
Dalian Jiaotong University,
Dalian 116028, China

Xun Yu

Department of Mechanical and Energy Engineering,
University of North Texas,
Denton, TX 76203
e-mail: xun.yu@unt.edu

Contributed by the Solar Energy Division of ASME for publication in the Journal of Solar Energy Engineering. Manuscript received April 4, 2012; final manuscript received November 19, 2012; published online January 25, 2013. Assoc. Editor: Rainer Tamme.

J. Sol. Energy Eng 135(2), 024505 (Jan 25, 2013) (5 pages) Paper No: SOL-12-1003; doi: 10.1115/1.4023181 History: Received January 04, 2012; Revised November 19, 2012

Phase change materials (PCM) have been incorporated with cementitious construction materials to store thermal energy and control interior climate in buildings, which can reduce the energy consumption and improve thermal comfort. However, addition of PCM is found to decrease strength and thermal conductivity of the cement-based composite. Carbon nanotubes (CNT) are integrated into cementitious construction materials with microencapsulated PCM to improve their thermal-conductive and mechanical performances. Results of lab and outdoor tests show the modified cement mortar containing both PCM and CNT exhibits better heat insulation properties than plain cement mortar. A temperature difference up to 6.8 °C was observed between interiors of two same size scale-down building models (one made of plain cement mortar, the other one made of cement mortar with PCM and CNT). This indicates that the modified cement mortar can effectively enhance the thermal storage property of cement-based building materials.

Copyright © 2013 by ASME
Your Session has timed out. Please sign back in to continue.


Pérez-Lombard, L., Ortiz, J., and Pout, C., 2008, “A Review on Buildings Energy Consumption Information,” Energy Build., 40(3), pp. 394–398. [CrossRef]
Khudhair, A. M., and Farid, M. M., 2004, “A Review on Energy Conservation in Building Applications With Thermal Storage by Latent Heat Using Phase Change Materials,” Energy Convers. Manage., 45(2), pp. 263–275. [CrossRef]
Bentz, D., and Turpin, R., 2007, “Potential Applications of Phase Change Materials in Concrete Technology,” Cem. Concr. Compos., 29(7), pp. 527–532. [CrossRef]
BASF, 2008, “Phase Change Materials (PCM): Latent Heat Storage for Interior Climate Control,” BASF Business Center Europe North, Ludwigshafen, Germany, http://www.energiforumdanmark.dk/fileadmin/pr__sentationer/BASF_-_Phase_Change_Material_-_Micronal_PCM_pdf.pdf
Isa, M. H. M., Zhao, X. D., and Yoshino, H., 2010, “Preliminary Study of Passive Cooling Strategy Using a Combination of PCM and Copper Foam to Increase Thermal Heat Storage in Building Façade,” Sustainability, 2, pp. 2365–2381. [CrossRef]
Craig, R. G., Eick, J. D., and Peyton, F. A., 1967, “Strength Properties of Waxes at Various Temperatures and Their Practical Application,” J. Dent. Res., 46(1), pp. 300–305. [CrossRef] [PubMed]
Hunger, M., Entrop, A. G., Mandilaras, I., Brouwers, H. J. H., and Founti, M., 2009, “The Behavior of Self-Compacting Concrete Containing Micro-Encapsulated Phase Change Materials,” Cem. Concr. Compos., 31, pp. 731–743. [CrossRef]
Beardmore, R., 2011, “Thermodynamics Heat Transfer,” RoyMech, http://www.roymech.co.uk/Related/Thermos/Thermos_HeatTransfer.html
The Engineering ToolBox, 2013, “Thermal Conductivity of Some Common Materials and Gases,” http://www.engineeringtoolbox.com/thermal-conductivity-d_429.html
Gao, L., Zhou, X. F., and Ding, Y. L., 2007, “Effective Thermal and Electrical Conductivity of Carbon Nanotube Composites,” Chem. Phys. Lett., 434, pp. 297–300. [CrossRef]
Biercuk, M. J., Llaguno, M. C., Radosavljevic, M., Hyun, J. K., and Johnson, A. T., 2002, “Carbon Nanotube Composites for Thermal Management,” Appl. Phys. Lett., 80, pp. 2767–2769. [CrossRef]
Pradhan, N. R., 2010, “Thermal Conductivity of Nanowires, Nanotubes and Polymer-Nanotube Composites,” Dissertation for the Doctor Degree of Philosophy, Worcester Polytechnic Institute, Worcester, MA.
Choi, Y. K., Sugimoto, K. I., Song, S. M., and Endo, M., 2005, “Mechanical and Thermal Properties of Vapor-Grown Carbon Nanofiber and Polycarbonate Composite Sheets,” Mater. Lett., 59, pp. 3514–3520. [CrossRef]
Cabezaa, L. F., Castellóna, C., Noguésa, M., Medranoa, M., Leppersb, R., and Zubillagac, O., 2007, “Use of Microencapsulated PCM in Concrete Walls for Energy Savings,” Energy Build., 39(2), pp. 113–119. [CrossRef]
Rodriguez-Ubinas, E., Ruiz-Valero, L., Vega, S., and Neil, J., 2012, “Applications of Phase Change Material in Highly Energy-Efficient Houses,” Energy Build., 50, pp. 49–62. [CrossRef]
Schossig, P., Henninga, H. M., Gschwandera, S., and Haussmann, T., 2005, “Micro-Encapsulated Phase-Change Materials Integrated Into Construction Materials,” Sol. Energy Mater. Sol. Cells, 89, pp. 297–306. [CrossRef]


Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 5

Measured temperature time-histories and interior temperature difference of two building models in the lab test

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 6

Measured temperature time-histories and interior temperature difference of two building models in the outdoor test

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 4

Designed time-varying temperature curve to control the interior temperature of the environmental test charmer

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 3

Structure of building models and lab and outdoor experiment setups

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 2

SEM photographs of PCM/cement mortars with/without CNT: (a) with 5% PCM, (b) with 5% PCM and 1% CNT

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 1

Photographs of Micronal® DS 5000X [4]




Some tools below are only available to our subscribers or users with an online account.

Related Content

Customize your page view by dragging and repositioning the boxes below.

Related Journal Articles
Related eBook Content
Topic Collections

Sorry! You do not have access to this content. For assistance or to subscribe, please contact us:

  • TELEPHONE: 1-800-843-2763 (Toll-free in the USA)
  • EMAIL: asmedigitalcollection@asme.org
Sign In