Performance evaluation of phase change materials suitable for cities representing the whole tropical savanna climate region

Madina Bimaganbetova, Shazim Ali Memon, Almas Sheriyev

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


Phase change materials can be applied into building framework to reduce energy and fossil fuel consumption as well as to make the building sector more sustainable. In this research, it is hypothesized that a group of PCMs in the narrow range can be used for the whole tropical savanna climate according to Koppen-Geiger climate classification. Eight representative cities (Bamako, Bangalore, Bangkok, Brasilia, Dar es Salaam, Kolkata, Maputo and Surabaya) from seven different countries (Mali, Thailand, Brazil, Tanzania, India, Mozambique and Indonesia) were chosen in accordance with their demographical and economical state. Numerical simulations were performed in DesignBuilder software to carry out detailed investigation about thermal behavior and energy performance of a residential building integrated with eleven different PCMs (PCM21-PCM31). In addition, the impact of PCM thickness, its location in the wall (external, middle, and internal) and different surface area were assessed. Results of thermal performance during a summer day revealed that temperature fluctuations in PCM integrated building dropped by up to 2.76 °C even when the HVAC system was switched off. From energy analysis, the hypothesis of this research was confirmed, and the narrow range of PCMs (PCM25-PCM29) were found to be optimum for this climate zone. Considerable energy savings and energy consumption reduction up to 68.63% was obtained. Furthermore, for constant volume, the thinner PCM layer with greater surface area exhibited superior performance in terms of energy savings. Hence, the incorporation of PCM in buildings located in a tropical savanna climate is feasible.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)402-416
Number of pages15
JournalRenewable Energy
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2020


  • Energy efficiency
  • Koppen-Geiger classification
  • Phase change materials
  • Thermal performance

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment

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