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Front. Mater. | doi: 10.3389/fmats.2018.00058

Thermoplastic polyurethane blends with thermal energy storage/release capability

 Andrea Dorigato1*, Daniele Rigotti1 and  Alessandro Pegoretti1
  • 1Dipartimento di Ingegneria Industriale, Università degli Studi di Trento, Italy

In this work innovative the thermal energy storage materials were developed by encapsulating a paraffin having a melting temperature of 6 °C (M6D) in a thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU), and the most important physical properties of the resulting samples were investigated from a thermo-mechanical point of view. Field emission scanning electron microscope (FESEM) micrographs demonstrated a homogeneous microcapsules distribution and good interfacial adhesion with the TPU matrix even at elevated M6D concentrations. With a capsule concentration of 60 wt% it was possible to obtain elevated melting enthalpy values (up to 95 J/g), retaining the energy storage/release properties even after 50 thermal cycles. The hardness and the dimensional stability of the TPU matrix above its glass transition temperature were strongly increased upon M6D addition, but this stiffening effect was associated to a certain embrittlement. The investigated blends could be applied for winter sport application for low temperature thermal energy storage/release materials.

Keywords: Polyurethanes, blends, Thermal properties, Mechanical Properties, energy storage

Received: 14 Jun 2018; Accepted: 04 Sep 2018.

Edited by:

Alfonso Maffezzoli, University of Salento, Italy

Reviewed by:

Veronique Michaud, École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne, Switzerland
Debora Puglia, University of Perugia, Italy  

Copyright: © 2018 Dorigato, Rigotti and Pegoretti. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

* Correspondence: Dr. Andrea Dorigato, Dipartimento di Ingegneria Industriale, Università degli Studi di Trento, Trento, 38123, Trentino-Alto Adige/Südtirol, Italy, andrea.dorigato@unitn.it