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Applied Sciences

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Heat storage, Phase transformations (Statistical physics), Materials -- Thermal properties


Manganese (II) chloride tetrahydrate, classified as an inorganic phase-change material (PCM), can be used as a thermal energy storage material, saving and releasing thermal energy during its phase transitions. In this study, thermophysical properties, such as phase change temperatures, latent heat, and thermal conductivities, of four types of MnCl2·4H2O PCMs were investigated under single and dual phases (liquid-, solid-, and dual-phase PCMs) using differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) and a heat flow meter. PCMs with a liquid or dual phases exhibited superheating issues, and their melting temperatures were 7 to 10 °C higher than the reference melting temperatures. The PCMs had latent heats between 146 and 176 J/g in the temperature range of 23 to 45 °C under the endothermic process. Severe supercooling during the exothermic process was observed in all as-received specimens, but was mitigated in the homogenization-treated specimen, which sustained an increase in solidification temperature of about 15 °C compared with the as-received and treated PCMs. The diffusivities of PCMs were between 9.76 × 10−6 and 2.35 × 10−5 mm2/s. The diffusivities of the PCMs in the solid phase were higher than those in the liquid phase. During the initial holding time of the endothermic process, the PCM in the liquid phase could not be fully solidified due to an insufficient initial holding time and very low diffusivity, which caused superheating during the DSC measurement. Moreover, in the exothermic process, a fast cooling rate of 5 °C/min and low thermal diffusivity caused supercooling. In particular, the diffusivity of the liquid PCM was lower than those of the solid PCM and other PCMs, which caused extremely high supercooling during the DSC measurement. This paper provides the thermophysical properties of MnCl2·4H2O PCMs, which are not available in the literature. The homogeneity of PCMs in their initial states and their heating/cooling rates were identified, and constitute important factors for accurately measuring the thermophysical properties of PCMs.


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