Feasibility study on a novel cooling technique using a phase change material in an automotive engine

Ki bum Kim, Kyung wook Choi, Young jin Kim, Ki hyung Lee, Kwan soo Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

55 Citations (Scopus)


The size of a cooling inventory is generally designed based on which size can endure the excessive heat load situations that occur sporadically. As a result, cooling systems are often too large for most normal driving modes. There have been numerous efforts to downsize the automotive engine cooling system using novel concepts and strategies. Efficient cooling in automobiles is beneficial in reducing harmful emissions as well as improving fuel economy. A simulation was conducted to validate the feasibility of using a novel cooling strategy that utilized the heat load averaging capabilities of a phase change material (PCM). Three prototypes were designed: full-size, down-sized, and a down-sized prototype with a heat accumulator containing the PCM inside. When the full-size of the cooling inventory was down-sized by 30%, this smaller design failed to dissipate the peak heat load and consequently led to a significant increase in the coolant temperature, around 25 °C greater than that in the full-size system. However, the peak heat load was successfully averaged out in the down-sized system with a heat accumulator. This novel cooling concept will contribute to a substantial reduction in the cooling system in terms of volume and hangover.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)478-484
Number of pages7
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2010


  • Automotive engine cooling
  • Latent heat
  • Phase change material (PCM)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Building and Construction
  • Pollution
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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