Heat and cold storage with PCM: An up to date introduction into basics and applications

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The years 2006 and 2007 mark a dramatic change of peoples view regarding c- mate change and energy consumption. The new IPCC report makes clear that - mankind plays a dominant role on climate change due to CO emissions from en- 2 ergy consumption, and that a significant reduction in CO emissions is necessary 2 within decades. At the same time, the supply of fossil energy sources like coal, oil, and natural gas becomes less reliable. In spring 2008, the oil price rose beyond 100 $/barrel for the first time in history. It is commonly accepted today that we have to reduce the use of fossil fuels to cut down the dependency on the supply countries and to reduce CO emissions. The use of renewable energy sources and 2 increased energy efficiency are the main strategies to achieve this goal. In both strategies, heat and cold storage will play an important role. People use energy in different forms, as heat, as mechanical energy, and as light. With the discovery of fire, humankind was the first time able to supply heat and light when needed. About 2000 years ago, the Romans started to use ceramic tiles to store heat in under floor heating systems. Even when the fire was out, the room stayed warm. Since ancient times, people also know how to cool food with ice as cold storage.