Environmental Balances of Thermal Superinsulations
This paper introduces environmental balances for three different thermal insulation concepts (evacuated multi-foils, evacuated glass fibers, and a conventional foam insulation) of a 300 L LN2 storage tank. The calculations are based on material consumptions in the manufacturing phase and thermal losses of the tank during the use phase. Materials consumption is identified from the design of the tank taking into account stainless steel containers, thickness of container walls, mechanical supports, bellows, getter, and insulation materials. Thermal losses are calculated using finite element methods. It is demonstrated that evacuated multi-foil insulation is, from energetic and environmental considerations, by far superior to evacuated glass fibers and to conventional foam insulation. Its environmental “amortization time” (a return on investment when outbalancing environmental impacts by corresponding savings) is in the order of 80–160 weeks of operation. This also demonstrates that it is important to apply an environmental life cycle perspective, and not analyze only the energetic and materials aspects, when new technologies are assessed.
Keywordsefficiency finite elements life cycle assessment thermal superinsulations
Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.
- 1.Büttner D., Kreh A., Fricke J., Reiss H. (1989). High Temp. – High Press. 21:39Google Scholar
- 2.H. Reiss, “Superisolationen”, in German VDI Heat Atlas, 9th Ed. (Springer Verlag, Berlin, 2002), Sect. Kf1-Kf20.Google Scholar
- 4.M. G. Kaganer, Thermal Isulation in Cryogenic Engineering (Israel Program for Scientific Translations, Jerusalem, 1969), Chap. IV.Google Scholar
- 5.Datenbuch der Isoliertechnik (Käfer Isoliertechnik, Bremen, Germany,1998), Sect. 3.9, Blatt 62, curve AB.Google Scholar
- 6.ISO 14040, Environmental Management-Life Cycle Assessment- Principles and Framework, International Organisation for Standardisations (1997).Google Scholar
- 7.Walker G. (1983), Cryocoolers, Part 1: Fundamentals. Plenum Press, New York, London, Fig. 1.4.Google Scholar
- 8.Steen B. (1999). A Systematic Approach to Environmental Priority Strategies in Product Development (EPS), Version 2000-Models and Data of Default Method. Chalmers University of Technology, Göteborg, SwedenGoogle Scholar