Multi-Layer Phase-Change Material Insulation

EPA Grant Number: SU836789
Title: Multi-Layer Phase-Change Material Insulation
Investigators: Boetcher, Sandra
Institution: Embry - Riddle Aeronautical University
EPA Project Officer: Sergeant, Anne
Phase: I
Project Period: September 1, 2016 through August 31, 2017
Project Amount: $15,000
RFA: P3 Awards: A National Student Design Competition for Sustainability Focusing on People, Prosperity and the Planet (2016) RFA Text |  Recipients Lists
Research Category: P3 Awards , P3 Challenge Area - Built Environment , Sustainability

Description:

Develop a prototype multi-layer PV insulation that will increase building energy efficiency.  The research will also provide insights into enhancing the heat transfer of mixed and multi-layer phase-change material panels.

Objective:

The goal of this EPA P3 Phase I project is to improve building efficiency by implementing either multi-layer or composite phase-change material (PCM) insulation. Approximately 40% of the energy consumption and 70% of the electricity use in the United States is due to buildings. A major way that building energy consumption can be reduced is through novel building materials, such as composite materials containing PCMs, which control the flow of heat in and out of building roofs, walls, and floors. The insulation will be designed for homes located within the southeastern United States, particularly Florida.

Approach:

The research has two aims: (a) the first aim is to investigate the efficacy of using multiple, separate layers of PCM on maintaining comfortable indoor temperatures over various times of day and seasons, and (b) the second aim is to determine the effect on mixing different PCMs with different melting points on the desired indoor temperature. The approach will be to use both numerical simulation and physical experimentation.

Expected Results:

The expected result of the EPA P3 Phase I project is a prototype multi-layer PV insulation that will increase building energy efficiency. Further, the research conducted will provide insights into enhancing the heat transfer of mixed and multi-layer PCM panels.

Supplemental Keywords:

Phase-Change Material, Building Energy Efficiency, Solar, HVAC;