The material and physical properties of phase change materials (PCMs) are also studied since PCMs may be used to impregnate other materials or in slurry form for their very effective heat transport properties.
The rheology of PCMs changes significantly as they melt or freeze and this affects their flow behaviour. An understanding of how PCMs behave in pipe flow and storage is important in system design. Any agglomeration or settling of solids can potentially lead to blockage of the system or significant reduction in effectiveness.
Work is also done on developing compact heat exchangers as well as design and modelling techniques for the use of PCMs, heat pipes and micro-fluidics in thermal management systems for use in applications such as cooling electronics. Other areas of research into heat transfer are the application of thermo-fluid modelling to biological systems, medicine and fuel cells.
Facilities and capabilities
This brochure provides a brief outline of our facilities and capabilities.
Current research projects
- Manifest (Multi-scale ANalysis for Facilities for Energy STorage) (EPSRC)
- 4S-DHW (Small Smart Sustainable Systems for future Domestic Hot Water) (EPSRC)
- IDRIST (Industrial Demand Reduction through Innovative Storage Technologies) (EPSRC)
- ThermExS Lab (EPSRC)
- IMAGES (Integrated, Market-fit and Affordable Grid-scale Energy Storage) (EPSRC)
Previous research projects
- Heat networks operations and controls (DECC)
- PCM store optimised for integration with domestic heat pumps (DECC).
- Development of cost effective foam wall insulation system for mass adoption in the UK retrofit market (TSB).
- Energy storage systems in buildings (EPSRC / Buro Happold).