Matching Items (6)

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A finite element-based framework for understanding the energy performance of concrete elements incorporating phase change materials

Description

Dwindling energy resources and associated environmental costs have resulted in a serious need to design and construct energy efficient buildings. One of the strategies to develop energy efficient structural materials

Dwindling energy resources and associated environmental costs have resulted in a serious need to design and construct energy efficient buildings. One of the strategies to develop energy efficient structural materials is through the incorporation of phase change materials (PCM) in the host matrix. This research work presents details of a finite element-based framework that is used to study the thermal performance of structural precast concrete wall elements with and without a layer of phase change material. The simulation platform developed can be implemented for a wide variety of input parameters. In this study, two different locations in the continental United States, representing different ambient temperature conditions (corresponding to hot, cold and typical days of the year) are studied. Two different types of concrete - normal weight and lightweight, different PCM types, gypsum wallboard's with varying PCM percentages and different PCM layer thicknesses are also considered with an aim of understanding the energy flow across the wall member. Effect of changing PCM location and prolonged thermal loading are also studied. The temperature of the inside face of the wall and energy flow through the inside face of the wall, which determines the indoor HVAC energy consumption are used as the defining parameters. An ad-hoc optimization scheme is also implemented where the PCM thickness is fixed but its location and properties are varied. Numerical results show that energy savings are possible with small changes in baseline values, facilitating appropriate material design for desired characteristics.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2012

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Thermal storage and transport in colloidal nanocrystal-based materials

Description

The rapid progress of solution-phase synthesis has led colloidal nanocrystals one of the most versatile nanoscale materials, provided opportunities to tailor material's properties, and boosted related technological innovations. Colloidal nanocrystal-based

The rapid progress of solution-phase synthesis has led colloidal nanocrystals one of the most versatile nanoscale materials, provided opportunities to tailor material's properties, and boosted related technological innovations. Colloidal nanocrystal-based materials have been demonstrated success in a variety of applications, such as LEDs, electronics, solar cells and thermoelectrics. In each of these applications, the thermal transport property plays a big role. An undesirable temperature rise due to inefficient heat dissipation could lead to deleterious effects on devices' performance and lifetime. Hence, the first project is focused on investigating the thermal transport in colloidal nanocrystal solids. This study answers the question that how the molecular structure of nanocrystals affect the thermal transport, and provides insights for future device designs. In particular, PbS nanocrystals is used as a monitoring system, and the core diameter, ligand length and ligand binding group are systematically varied to study the corresponding effect on thermal transport.

Next, a fundamental study is presented on the phase stability and solid-liquid transformation of metallic (In, Sn and Bi) colloidal nanocrystals. Although the phase change of nanoparticles has been a long-standing research topic, the melting behavior of colloidal nanocrytstals is largely unexplored. In addition, this study is of practical importance to nanocrystal-based applications that operate at elevated temperatures. Embedding colloidal nanocrystals into thermally-stable polymer matrices allows preserving nanocrystal size throughout melt-freeze cycles, and therefore enabling observation of stable melting features. Size-dependent melting temperature, melting enthalpy and melting entropy have all been measured and discussed.

In the next two chapters, focus has been switched to developing colloidal nanocrystal-based phase change composites for thermal energy storage applications. In Chapter 4, a polymer matrix phase change nanocomposite has been created. In this composite, the melting temperature and energy density could be independently controlled by tuning nanocrystal diameter and volume fractions. In Chapter 5, a solution-phase synthesis on metal matrix-metal nanocrytal composite is presented. This approach enables excellent morphological control over nanocrystals and demonstrated a phase change composite with a thermal conductivity 2 - 3 orders of magnitude greater than typical phase change materials, such as organics and molten salts.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2015

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The optimized use of phase change materials in buildings

Description

In recent years, 40% of the total world energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions is because of buildings. Out of that 60% of building energy consumption is due to HVAC

In recent years, 40% of the total world energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions is because of buildings. Out of that 60% of building energy consumption is due to HVAC systems. Under current trends these values will increase in coming years. So, it is important to identify passive cooling or heating technologies to meet this need. The concept of thermal energy storage (TES), as noted by many authors, is a promising way to rectify indoor temperature fluctuations. Due to its high energy density and the use of latent energy, Phase Change Materials (PCMs) are an efficient choice to use as TES. A question that has not satisfactorily been addressed, however, is the optimum location of PCM. In other words, given a constant PCM mass, where is the best location for it in a building? This thesis addresses this question by positioning PCM to obtain maximum energy savings and peak time delay. This study is divided into three parts. The first part is to understand the thermal behavior of building surfaces, using EnergyPlus software. For analysis, a commercial prototype building model for a small office in Phoenix, provided by the U.S. Department of Energy, is applied and the weather location file for Phoenix, Arizona is also used. The second part is to justify the best location, which is obtained from EnergyPlus, using a transient grey box building model. For that we have developed a Resistance-Capacitance (RC) thermal network and studied the thermal profile of a building in Phoenix. The final part is to find the best location for PCMs in buildings using EnergyPlus software. In this part, the mass of PCM used in each location remains unchanged. This part also includes the impact of the PCM mass on the optimized location and how the peak shift varies. From the analysis, it is observed that the ceiling is the best location to install PCM for yielding the maximum reduction in HVAC energy consumption for a hot, arid climate like Phoenix.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2018

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Evaluation of the Performance of Multi-Component Cementitious Composites: Multi-Scale Experimental Characterization and Numerical Simulation

Description

Being a remarkably versatile and inexpensive building material, concrete has found tremendous use in development of modern infrastructure and is the most widely used material in the world. Extensive research

Being a remarkably versatile and inexpensive building material, concrete has found tremendous use in development of modern infrastructure and is the most widely used material in the world. Extensive research in the field of concrete has led to the development of a wide array of concretes with applications ranging from building of skyscrapers to paving of highways. These varied applications require special cementitious composites which can satisfy the demand for enhanced functionalities such as high strength, high durability and improved thermal characteristics among others.

The current study focuses on the fundamental understanding of such functional composites, from their microstructural design to macro-scale application. More specifically, this study investigates three different categories of functional cementitious composites. First, it discusses the differences between cementitious systems containing interground and blended limestone with and without alumina. The interground systems are found to outperform the blended systems due to differential grinding of limestone. A novel approach to deduce the particle size distribution of limestone and cement in the interground systems is proposed. Secondly, the study delves into the realm of ultra-high performance concrete, a novel material which possesses extremely high compressive-, tensile- and flexural-strength and service life as compared to regular concrete. The study presents a novel first principles-based paradigm to design economical ultra-high performance concretes using locally available materials. In the final part, the study addresses the thermal benefits of a novel type of concrete containing phase change materials. A software package was designed to perform numerical simulations to analyze temperature profiles and thermal stresses in concrete structures containing PCMs.

The design of these materials is accompanied by material characterization of cementitious binders. This has been accomplished using techniques that involve measurement of heat evolution (isothermal calorimetry), determination and quantification of reaction products (thermo-gravimetric analysis, x-ray diffraction, micro-indentation, scanning electron microscopy, energy-dispersive x-ray spectroscopy) and evaluation of pore-size distribution (mercury intrusion porosimetry). In addition, macro-scale testing has been carried out to determine compression, flexure and durability response. Numerical simulations have been carried out to understand hydration of cementitious composites, determine optimum particle packing and determine the thermal performance of these composites.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2018

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Incorporation of phase change materials into cementitious systems

Description

Manufacture of building materials requires significant energy, and as demand for these materials continues to increase, the energy requirement will as well. Offsetting this energy use will require increased focus

Manufacture of building materials requires significant energy, and as demand for these materials continues to increase, the energy requirement will as well. Offsetting this energy use will require increased focus on sustainable building materials. Further, the energy used in building, particularly in heating and air conditioning, accounts for 40 percent of a buildings energy use. Increasing the efficiency of building materials will reduce energy usage over the life time of the building. Current methods for maintaining the interior environment can be highly inefficient depending on the building materials selected. Materials such as concrete have low thermal efficiency and have a low heat capacity meaning it provides little insulation. Use of phase change materials (PCM) provides the opportunity to increase environmental efficiency of buildings by using the inherent latent heat storage as well as the increased heat capacity. Incorporating PCM into concrete via lightweight aggregates (LWA) by direct addition is seen as a viable option for increasing the thermal storage capabilities of concrete, thereby increasing building energy efficiency. As PCM change phase from solid to liquid, heat is absorbed from the surroundings, decreasing the demand on the air conditioning systems on a hot day or vice versa on a cold day. Further these materials provide an additional insulating capacity above the value of plain concrete. When the temperature drops outside the PCM turns back into a solid and releases the energy stored from the day. PCM is a hydrophobic material and causes reductions in compressive strength when incorporated directly into concrete, as shown in previous studies. A proposed method for mitigating this detrimental effect, while still incorporating PCM into concrete is to encapsulate the PCM in aggregate. This technique would, in theory, allow for the use of phase change materials directly in concrete, increasing the thermal efficiency of buildings, while negating the negative effect on compressive strength of the material.

Contributors

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Created

Date Created
  • 2013

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Multiphysics design optimization model for structural walls incorporating phase change materials

Description

Buildings consume a large portion of the world's energy, but with the integration of phase change materials (PCMs) in building elements this energy cost can be greatly reduced. The addition

Buildings consume a large portion of the world's energy, but with the integration of phase change materials (PCMs) in building elements this energy cost can be greatly reduced. The addition of PCMs into building elements, however, becomes a challenge to model and analyze how the material actually affects the energy flow and temperatures in the system. This research work presents a comprehensive computer program used to model and analyze PCM embedded wall systems. The use of the finite element method (FEM) provides the tool to analyze the energy flow of these systems. Finite element analysis (FEA) can model the transient analysis of a typical climate cycle along with nonlinear problems, which the addition of PCM causes. The use of phase change materials is also a costly material expense. The initial expense of using PCMs can be compensated by the reduction in energy costs it can provide. Optimization is the tool used to determine the optimal point between adding PCM into a wall and the amount of energy savings that layer will provide. The integration of these two tools into a computer program allows for models to be efficiently created, analyzed and optimized. The program was then used to understand the benefits between two different wall models, a wall with a single layer of PCM or a wall with two different PCM layers. The effect of the PCMs on the inside wall temperature along with the energy flow across the wall are computed. The numerical results show that a multi-layer PCM wall was more energy efficient and cost effective than the single PCM layer wall. A structural analysis was then performed on the optimized designs using ABAQUS v. 6.10 to ensure the structural integrity of the wall was not affected by adding PCM layer(s).

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2013