A critical review on phase change materials (PCM) for sustainable and energy efficient building: Design, characteristic, performance and application

Xiaonan Wang, Wengui Li*, Zhiyu Luo, Kejin Wang, Surendra P. Shah

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations

Abstract

Building construction deserves many attentions due to its huge energy consumption, while Phase Change Materials (PCMs) provide positive solutions for improving energy efficiency and enhancing the thermal properties of construction materials. However, PCMs also present some negative impacts, such as weakening mechanical properties and increasing costs, chemical instability and so on. In this paper, the main characteristics of PCMs, design and incorporating methods, effects on energy consumption and construction reliability are comprehensively reviewed and discussed. Although many materials have the capacity of phase change, some organic PCMs are more suitable due to the higher latent heat and favourable phase change point in buildings, when eutectic PCMs present greater potential to become the optimal one but much effort is required for investigations. Current design methods and application in construction materials can meet the essential requirements, but the effectiveness is inadequate, including low efficiency of phase changing, leading to low energy storage. Subsequently, some promising research direction and critical areas for optimization are also proposed accordingly in this paper. Future development of PCMs, including novel PCM and efficient incorporation, real applications and functions in buildings are proposed. Additionally, multifunctional construction materials combining PCM deserve much attention and possess promising prospect for energy saving in sustainable and energy efficient building construction.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number111923
JournalEnergy and Buildings
Volume260
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 1 2022

Keywords

  • Building
  • Energy saving
  • Phase Change Material (PCM)
  • Sustainability
  • Thermal property

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Building and Construction
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'A critical review on phase change materials (PCM) for sustainable and energy efficient building: Design, characteristic, performance and application'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this