Modified Technogenic Asphaltenes as Enhancers of the Thermal Conductivity of Paraffin
The low thermal conductivity of paraffin and other organic phase change materials limits their use in thermal energy storage devices. The introduction of components with a high thermal conductivity such as graphene into these materials leads to an increase in their thermal conductivity. In this work, we studied the use of inexpensive carbon fillers containing a polycyclic aromatic core, due to them having a structural similarity with graphene, to increase the thermal conductivity of paraffin. As such fillers, technogenic asphaltenes isolated from ethylene tar and their modified derivatives were used. It is shown that the optimal concentration of carbon fillers in the paraffin composite, which contributes to the formation of a structural framework and resistance to sedimentation, is 5 and 30 wt. %, while intermediate concentrations are ineffective, apparently due to the formation of large aggregates, the concentration of which is insufficient to form a strong framework. It has been found that the addition of asphaltenes modified with ammonium persulfate in acetic acid significantly increases the thermal conductivity of paraffin by up to 72%.