Phase change material Micronal® PCM

BASF's phase change material Micronal® PCM effectively absorbs daytime temperature peaksSummer, sun, sunshine - although much longed for throughout the winter months, they can soon become too much of a good thing when they arrive. Especially modern houses of lightweight construction and office complexes of steel and glass with a transparent frontage creating a greenhouse effect can turn into a sauna overnight.

BASF's Micronal® PCM SmartBoard offers a solution to this problem. The special properties of this innovative gypsum wall board are provided by the raw material Micronal® PCM, a microencapsulated latent heat storer based on paraffin wax that absorbs excess heat. The effectiveness of Micronal® PCM as a thermal buffer is due to the physical phenomena that occur when the wax changes from the solid to the liquid state (see Info Box).

During this phase transition, a large amount of thermal energy (known as latent heat) is consumed without the temperature of the material itself changing. This is the same effect which is so welcome on sweltering hot days when the ice cubes in a drink absorb large amounts of heat when melting, effectively keeping the drink cool for a long time. The tiny polymer shells filled with wax have an enormous heat storage capacity.Naturally, the temperatures in private homes and offices don't have to be quite so icy, which is why BASF's development experts chose high purity paraffin waxes instead of water as latent heat storers (also known as phase change materials or PCM), and optimized their melting point to suit the specific climatic requirements of buildings.

Source: corporate.basf.comAdded: 18 July 2006