Energy storage materials with oxide-encapsulated inclusions of low melting metal

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Abstract

A composite energy storage material (ESM) with inclusions of a low-melting point metal encapsulated in protective metal oxide shells is prepared and characterized. ESM precursor is a metal matrix composite with metal oxide inclusions. Controlled redox reaction between the matrix and inclusions yields a composite with inclusions of an oxide encapsulated, easy to melt metal. Al/Bi2O3 nanocomposite thermites served as precursors for ESM with Al matrix and Bi inclusions encapsulated with Al2O3. Thermal and mechanical properties of the ESM were compared to those of reference binary Al/Bi and ternary Al/Bi/Al2O3 materials. The material containing encapsulated Bi inclusions stored energy by melting and solidifying Bi inclusions repeatedly. The inclusions did not drift upon heating; composite structure remained largely intact upon thermal cycling. Conversely, the structure of reference materials with similar compositions but without encapsulated Bi inclusions was not preserved upon thermal cycling. Molten Bi tended to separate from Al and form coarse network of inclusions. Upon cycling, Bi accumulated on surface of the material. Difference in mobility between encapsulated and non-encapsulated Bi inclusions caused differences in the mechanical properties of the composites. Materials with encapsulated Bi inclusions were much stronger and capable of retaining their structure and strength despite thermal cycling.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)254-260
Number of pages7
JournalActa Materialia
Volume107
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 1 2016

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Ceramics and Composites
  • Polymers and Plastics
  • Metals and Alloys

Keywords

  • High thermal conductivity
  • Metal composite
  • Phase change materials

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