Date of Award

5-2011

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Legacy Department

Materials Science and Engineering

Advisor

Blouin, Vincent Y.

Committee Member

Richardson , Kathleen

Committee Member

Skaar , Eric

Abstract

Phase Change Materials (PCM) have many commercial applications, including in buildings to reduce cooling and heating loads. However, the lack of research has prevented their use as a common building material. This research is part of a larger project that aims at developing a set of practical design guidelines for integrating PCM in buildings. A review of and classification of common PCM available on the market is provided. The thesis then focuses on the experimental characterization of the thermo-physical properties of PCM-integrated building materials and the development of a numerical model for the thermal analysis of buildings with PCM. Different types of PCM are mixed in plaster, a building material used for wall surface finish. The main thermal properties of interest are the thermal conductivity, latent heat, and melting and solidification temperatures. Differential scanning calorimetry is conducted to determine the phase change temperature and the latent heat. A thermopile is used to measure thermal conductivity. A Finite Element numerical model of a wall assembly is used to conduct parametric studies and predict building energy consumption.

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