Ice as made from pure water provides a very good illustration of what phase change materials are. In its solid phase, water exists as "ice" at sub-zero temperatures. When exposed to heat, the temperature of ice starts rising in correlation to its specific heat capacity, until at 0°C, it starts liquefying. This is the phase change temperature for ice, and two very important observations are noteworthy during its phase change.
Phase Change Material (PCM)
Phase Change Materials (PCMs) are special thermal energy storage materials being extensively used as a reliable source of energy to maintain required temperatures in various industries. They use chemical bonds to store and release heat. The thermal energy transfer occurs when a material changes from a solid to a liquid or from a liquid to a solid. This is called a change in state or "phase".
We develop and manufacture a wide range of PCMs for applications in different temperatures: from -65°C to +89°C. PCM can be classified as Hydrated Salts (HS), Organic Mixtures (OM) and Form Stable (FS). PCMs are available in bulk and in standard encapsulation such as:
- Drums for filling in your own encapsulations.
- Bottles & Panels of standard/customized sizes.
- Pouches of standard/customized sizes.
- Standard Spheres made of HDPE and PP 75 mm diameter spheres for lower temperature PCMs and stainless steel 63 mm, 80 mm or 100 mm spheres for applications at higher temperature PCM (>40 °C) or high-pressure conditions.
The temperature remains constantly at 0°C for a long time
This is regardless of the variation in temperature outside. The ice cubes continue absorbing the heat; however, till all of ice converts into water, the temperature is constant.
The latent heat capacity
The energy absorbed at 0°C by ice to turn liquid is higher than energy absorbed at any other temperature. The jargon associated with this phenomenon is latent heat capacity, because the energy absorbed by ice remains "latent" or "hidden" and does not show as temperature change in the ice temperature. As a result, if the requirement for a given application is to maintain temperatures invariablyat 0°C, ice can be an excellent choice of energy storage. For example, for maintaining temperature of perishable sea-food over long journeys at ambient temperatures, the product can be kept in contact with sufficient amount of ice, which would absorb the ambient heat and maintain the temperature quite efficiently.
Phase Change Materials (PCM) = Ice for every temperature
While it is always convenient to use ice for cold storage, an important point to note is that it absorbs large amounts of energy only at 0°C and would not be the most efficient solution at any other temperature requirement. This is where PCMs come in use. Phase Change Materials can be tailored for use at melt/freeze point. In other words, one can have an ice- type thermal storage at whatever temperatures they require, or as we like to call it, an ice for every temperature.
Key benefits of PCM
Cooling/Heating without the need for external source of energy at the time of operation.
Shift peak power loads to off-peak power hours.
Provide for a clean back-up medium during contingency.
Effective heat/cool dissipation and thermal management medium.
Extend the use of renewable energy by storage.
Reusability - Reduction of emissions and use of fossil fuels.
able to maintain the optimal rate or level to meet the needs of the present without compromising the needs of future genrations, the PLUSS way