Thermal energy transport within porous polymer materials: Effects of fiber characteristics

H. Wu, Jintu Fan, N. Du

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

32 Citations (Scopus)


A theoretical model integrating the radiative and conductive heat transfer is presented and applied to evaluate the thermal energy transport within porous polymer materials. The model was first validated by comparing the computed thermal energy flux with the experimental measurements of two porous polymer materials made of wool and polyester. The model was then used to predict the effects of the polymer fiber characteristics (viz. fiber fractional volume, fiber emissivity, fiber radius, and fiber thermal conductivity) on the thermal energy flux within the porous polymer materials. It was found that decreasing fiber radius would significantly reduce the total thermal energy flux through the porous polymer materials, whereas increasing fibre emissivity or decreasing the thermal conductivity would cause a just slight reduction of the total thermal energy flux. The fiber fractional volume had a significant influence on the thermal energy flux, and thereby the fiber fractional volume can be optimized in view of improving the thermal insulating performance of the porous polymer materials. © 2007 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)576-583
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Applied Polymer Science
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 5 Oct 2007


  • Fibers
  • Modeling
  • Polyesters
  • Radiation
  • Thermal properties

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Polymers and Plastics


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