Encapsulation of phase change materials using rice-husk-char

Wayne Gondora, Khalid Doudin, Daniel J. Nowakoski, Bo Xiao, Yulong Ding, Tony Bridgwater, Qingchun Yuan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper explored a new approach to prepare phase change microcapsules using carbon-based particles via Pickering emulsions for energy storage applications. Rice-husk-char, a by-product in biofuel production, containing 53.58 wt% of carbon was used as a model carbon-based material to encapsulate hexadecane. As a model phase change material, hexadecane was emulsified in aqueous suspensions of rice-husk-char nanoparticles. Water soluble polymers poly(diallyldimethyl-ammonium chloride) and poly(sodium styrene sulfonate) were used to fix the rice-husk-char nanoparticles on the emulsion droplets through layer-by-layer assembly to enhance the structural stability of the microcapsules. The microcapsules formed are composed of a thin shell encompassing a large core consisting of hexadecane. Thermal gravimetrical and differential scanning calorimeter analyses showed the phase change enthalpy of 80.9 kJ kg−1 or 120.0 MJ m−3. Design criteria of phase change microcapsules and preparation considerations were discussed in terms of desired applications. This work demonstrated possible utilisations of biomass-originated carbon-based material for thermal energy recovery and storage applications, which can be a new route of carbon capture and utilisation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)274-281
Number of pages8
JournalApplied Energy
Early online date28 Aug 2016
Publication statusPublished - 15 Nov 2016

Bibliographical note

© 2016, Elsevier. Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/


  • layer-by-layer assembly
  • phase change microcapsules
  • pickering emulsion
  • rice husk char
  • thermal energy storage


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