The novel use of phase change materials in an open type refrigerated display cabinet: A theoretical investigation

F. A. Alzuwaid, Y. T. Ge*, S. A. Tassou, J. Sun

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


In this paper, 2D CFD models have been developed for a prototype refrigerated open type multi-deck display cabinet with and without integrated phase change material (PCM). The models can predict the effect of adding a PCM container on cabinet efficiencies, air temperature distributions, product temperatures and air flow patterns inside the cabinet at a range of operating conditions including space air temperatures and evaporator air velocities. To validate the cabinet models, the prototype cabinet was mounted in an air conditioned chamber and extensive experiments were conducted at constant space air temperature and relative humidity. The cabinet models have therefore been validated through comparison with experiment results for air temperatures at different locations of the airflow path and of food products. Simulation results show that significant energy can be saved through the installation of a PCM container. Further benefits include greater stabilization of product temperatures during defrost periods for the modified display cabinet. Consequently, the validated models can be used to explore and analyse the cabinet performance and control strategies at various operating and design conditions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)76-85
Number of pages10
JournalApplied Energy
Publication statusPublished - 15 Oct 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • CFD
  • Energy savings
  • Integrated display cabinet model
  • Model validation and application
  • Phase change material


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