Phase change material (PCM) used in buildings can reduce the building energy consumption and indoor temperature fluctuation. A composite PCM has been fabricated by the binary eutectic mixture of tetradecanol (TD) and lauric acid (LA) absorbed into the expanded perlite (EP) using vacuum impregnation method, and its thermal conductivity was promoted by aluminium powder (AP) additive. Besides, the styrene-acrylic emulsion has been mixed with the composite PCM particles to form the protective film, so as to solve the problem of leakage. Thus, a novel PCM panel (PCMP) has been prepared using compression moulding forming method. The thermal property, microstructure characteristic, mechanical property, thermal conductivity, thermal reliability and leakage of the composite PCM have been investigated and analysed. Meanwhile, the thermal performance of the prepared PCMP was tested through PCMPs installed on the inside wall of a cell under outdoor climatic conditions. The composite PCM has a melting temperature of 24.9 °C, a freezing temperature of 25.2 °C, a melting latent heat of 78.2 J/g and a freezing latent heat of 81.3 J/g. The thermal conductivity test exposed that the thermal conductivity has been enhanced with the addition of AP and the latent heat has been decreased, but it still remains in a high level. The leakage test result has proven that liquid PCM leaking has been avoided by the surface film method. The thermal performance experiment has shown the significant function of PCMP about adjusting the indoor temperature and reducing the heats transferring between the wall inside and outside. In view of the thermal performance, mechanical property and thermal reliability results, it can be concluded that the prepared PCMP has a promising building application potential.
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