3 years ago

Ag-graphene/PEG composite phase change materials for enhancing solar-thermal energy conversion and storage capacity

Yuang Zhang, Jiasheng Wang, Jinjing Qiu, Xin Jin, Malik Muhammad Umair, Rongwen Lu, Shufen Zhang, Bingtao Tang

Publication date: 1 March 2019

Source: Applied Energy, Volume 237

Author(s): Yuang Zhang, Jiasheng Wang, Jinjing Qiu, Xin Jin, Malik Muhammad Umair, Rongwen Lu, Shufen Zhang, Bingtao Tang


In view of the excellent characteristic of thermal energy storage, phase change materials (PCMs) are of great significance for improving the efficiency of solar thermal energy utilization. However, the direct thermal effect of visible-light (40% of solar radiation) is very low. In order to improve the capabilities of visible-light absorption and photothermal conversion, we reported novel and efficient sunlight-driven PCMs based on polyethylene glycol (PEG) supported by Ag nanoparticle-functionalized graphene nanosheets (Ag–GNS). The multi-folded layered structure provides Ag–GNS a large surface area to support PEG for achieving the shape stability before and after phase transition. Meanwhile, based on the local surface plasma resonance effect of Ag, Ag has high visible light selective absorption and infrared reflectance, which can give Ag–GNS enhanced light absorption capacity and reduced thermal radiation. So Ag–GNS/PEG can harvest sunlight and convert light to thermal energy with significantly higher efficiency (η = 88.7–92.0%). Moreover, Ag–GNS/PEG composites exhibit enhanced thermal conductivities (49.5–95.3%), high energy storage densities (>166.1 J/g), high thermal energy storage/release rates and outstanding form-stable properties. Therefore, this novel sunlight-driven composite can be potentially used for clean and efficient utilization of solar energy.

Graphical abstracts

Enhanced light absorption capacity, reduced thermal radiation and high solar-to-thermal energy storage efficiency can be achieved by using of Ag–GNS/PEG composites.

Graphical abstract for this article

You might also like
Discover & Discuss Important Research

Keeping up-to-date with research can feel impossible, with papers being published faster than you'll ever be able to read them. That's where Researcher comes in: we're simplifying discovery and making important discussions happen. With over 19,000 sources, including peer-reviewed journals, preprints, blogs, universities, podcasts and Live events across 10 research areas, you'll never miss what's important to you. It's like social media, but better. Oh, and we should mention - it's free.

  • Download from Google Play
  • Download from App Store
  • Download from AppInChina

Researcher displays publicly available abstracts and doesn’t host any full article content. If the content is open access, we will direct clicks from the abstracts to the publisher website and display the PDF copy on our platform. Clicks to view the full text will be directed to the publisher website, where only users with subscriptions or access through their institution are able to view the full article.