A novel personal cooling system (PCS) incorporated with phase change materials (PCMs) and ventilation fans: An investigation on its cooling efficiency

Yehu Lu, Fanru Wei, Dandan Lai, Wen Shi, Faming Wang, Chuansi Gao, Guowen Song

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

47 Citations (Scopus)


Personal cooling systems (PCS) have been developed to mitigate the impact of severe heat stress for humans working in hot environments. It is still a great challenge to develop PCSs that are portable, inexpensive, and effective. We studied the performance of a new hybrid PCS incorporating both ventilation fans and phase change materials (PCMs). The cooling efficiency of the newly developed PCS was investigated on a sweating manikin in two hot conditions: hot humid (HH, 34. °C, 75% RH) and hot dry (HD, 34. °C, 28% RH). Four test scenarios were selected: fans off with no PCMs (i.e., Fan-off, the CONTROL), fans on with no PCMs (i.e., Fan-on), fans off with fully solidified PCMs (i.e., PCM+Fan-off), and fans on with fully solidified PCMs (i.e., PCM+Fan-on). It was found that the addition of PCMs provided a 54~78. min cooling in HH condition. In contrast, the PCMs only offered a 19-39. min cooling in HD condition. In both conditions, the ventilation fans greatly enhanced the evaporative heat loss compared with Fan-off. The hybrid PCS (i.e., PCM+Fan-on) provided a continuous cooling effect during the three-hour test and the average cooling rate for the whole body was around 111 and 315. W in HH and HD conditions, respectively. Overall, the new hybrid PCS may be an effective means of ameliorating symptoms of heat stress in both hot-humid and hot-dry environments.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)137-146
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Thermal Biology
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • Cooling efficiency
  • Personal cooling system
  • Phase change material
  • Ventilation fans

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Biochemistry
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • Developmental Biology

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