Project 27 - Heated Pavements-Phase Change Materials

Binary mixtures of fatty acid methyl esters as phase change materials for low temperature applications

March 2016 - Applied Thermal Engineering: Incorporating phase change materials (PCMs) into concrete pavements has been suggested as a means to improve anti-icing practices by reducing the accumulation of snow and ice. This paper reports on the development of two PCMs composed of a binary mixture of fatty acid methyl esters (FAME) at their eutectic composition, which provide a solid–liquid phase transformation with thermal transition temperature slightly above 0 °C and with a high enthalpy of fusion. The phase behavior of binary mixtures of medium length saturated FAME at their eutectic composition demonstrated ideal properties for PCMs. The eutectic binary mixtures and corresponding thermal properties are: (1) methyl laurate (C12) + methyl myristate, , and (2) methyl laurate + methyl palmitate, with eutectic melting temperatures and latent heats of fusion of 0.21 °C and 2.4 °C, and 174.3 J⋅g−1 and 166.5 J⋅g−1, respectively. Using differential scanning calorimetry, solid–liquid phase diagrams were created, indicating that the phase behavior of these binary mixtures at their eutectic compositions demonstrated useful thermal properties for PCMs. Current findings of this study indicate that these binary mixtures have the necessary properties to be a high performance PCM with the potential to reduce the levels of icing on concrete pavements.

March 2016 - Applied Thermal Engineering