Investigation of unbranched, saturated, carboxylic esters as phase change materials


The properties of unbranched, saturated carboxylic esters are evaluated against other classes of PCM

Thermophysical properties of eleven ester samples are determined using Differential Scanning Calorimetry (DSC), Thermogravimetric Analysis (TGA), and Transient Hot Bridge (THB) conductivity measurements

Environmental impact of carboxylic esters is assessed

Economic and availability data are collected for carboxylic esters


This study evaluates unbranched, saturated carboxylic esters with respect to their suitability to be used as storage media for latent heat storage applications. Therefore, important thermophysical properties are gathered both by means of literature research as well as by experimental measurements. Additionally esters are critically evaluated against other common phase change materials in terms of their environmental impact and their economic potential. The experimental investigations are performed for eleven selected ester samples with a focus on the determination of their melting temperature and their enthalpy of fusion using differential scanning calorimetry. Transient Hot Bridge was used to determine the thermal conductivity of the liquid samples while thermogravimetric analysis was employed for the evaluation of the 5% weight loss temperature as well as of the decomposition temperature of the non-volatile samples.

Both experimental results and literature data reveal that the highest potential of esters against other phase change materials lies in low temperature applications where the main alternative is using salt hydrates.


  • Esters;
  • Phase Change Materials;
  • Thermal Properties;
  • Latent Heat Storage

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