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Energies 2016, 9(8), 605; doi:10.3390/en9080605

Effectiveness of Using Phase Change Materials on Reducing Summer Overheating Issues in UK Residential Buildings with Identification of Influential Factors

Civil Engineering and Urban Planning Department, Institut National des Sciences Appliquées de Lyon, Villeurbanne F-69621, France
Faculty of Engineering and Environment, Newcastle Upon Tyne NE1 8ST, UK
College of Architecture and Civil Engineering, Beijing University of Technology, Beijing 100124, China
School of Civil and Building Engineering, Loughborough University, Loughborough LE11 3TU, UK
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Chi-Ming Lai
Received: 19 June 2016 / Revised: 27 July 2016 / Accepted: 28 July 2016 / Published: 1 August 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue PCM Applications in Building Energy)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [6532 KB, uploaded 1 August 2016]   |  


The UK is currently suffering great overheating issues in summer, especially in residential buildings where no air-conditioning has been installed. This overheating will seriously affect people’s comfort and even health, especially for elderly people. Phase change materials (PCMs) have been considered as a useful passive method, which absorb excessive heat when the room is hot and release the stored heat when the room is cool. This research has adopted a simulation method in DesignBuilder to evaluate the effectiveness of using PCMs to reduce the overheating issues in UK residential applications and has analyzed potential factors that will influence the effectiveness of overheating. The factors include environment-related (location of the building, global warming/climate change) and construction-related (location of the PCM, insulation, heavyweight/lightweight construction). This research provides useful evidence about using PCMs in UK residential applications and the results are helpful for architects and engineers to decide when and where to use PCMs in buildings to maintain a low carbon lifestyle. View Full-Text
Keywords: phase change material (PCM); thermal storage; overheating; residential buildings phase change material (PCM); thermal storage; overheating; residential buildings

This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Auzeby, M.; Wei, S.; Underwood, C.; Tindall, J.; Chen, C.; Ling, H.; Buswell, R. Effectiveness of Using Phase Change Materials on Reducing Summer Overheating Issues in UK Residential Buildings with Identification of Influential Factors. Energies 2016, 9, 605.

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