Performance analysis of phase-change material storage unit for both heating and cooling of buildings

Adeel Waqas*, Majid Ali, Zia Ud Din

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Citations (Scopus)


Utilisation of solar energy and the night ambient (cool) temperatures are the passive ways of heating and cooling of buildings. Intermittent and time-dependent nature of these sources makes thermal energy storage vital for efficient and continuous operation of these heating and cooling techniques. Latent heat thermal energy storage by phase-change materials (PCMs) is preferred over other storage techniques due to its high-energy storage density and isothermal storage process. The current study was aimed to evaluate the performance of the air-based PCM storage unit utilising solar energy and cool ambient night temperatures for comfort heating and cooling of a building in dry-cold and dry-hot climates. The performance of the studied PCM storage unit was maximised when the melting point of the PCM was ∼29°C in summer and 21°C during winter season. The appropriate melting point was ∼27.5°C for all-the-year-round performance. At lower melting points than 27.5°C, declination in the cooling capacity of the storage unit was more profound as compared to the improvement in the heating capacity. Also, it was concluded that the melting point of the PCM that provided maximum cooling during summer season could be used for winter heating also but not vice versa.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)379-397
Number of pages19
JournalInternational Journal of Sustainable Energy
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 21 Apr 2017


  • building cooling
  • free cooling
  • latent heat
  • PCM
  • solar air heating
  • thermal comfort

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Fuel Technology
  • General Energy
  • Process Chemistry and Technology
  • Fluid Flow and Transfer Processes


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