Innovative transparent thermal battery made by wood, lemon and coconut

Delignified wood for strength, citrus-based limonene acrylate for achieving the transparency, and coconut-based laurylalcohol for enabling the storage and release of energy – that's the recipe for the next generation transparent wood that can act as a biobased thermal battery.
Photo: David Callahan, KTH
Photo: David Callahan, KTH

The energy storage is possible as the molecule from the coconut can make the transition from liquid to solid and vice versa in the transparent wood, and thereby release energy, or absorb the energy. Similar to as when water freezes and thaws, but at the more comfortable 24 °C.

“Through this transition, we can heat or cool our surroundings, whichever is needed,” says Peter Olsén, researcher in WWSC.

The material has potential as future building material both for transparency and energy saving. If used in housing construction, the researchers say that 100 kilos of the material can save about 2.5 kWh per day in heating or cooling, reports

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The results were published in Small (impact factor 15.15)

Montanari, C., Chen, H., Lidfeldt, M., Gunnarsson, J., Olsén, P., Berglund, L. A., Sustainable Thermal Energy Batteries from Fully Bio-Based Transparent Wood. Small 2023, 2301262.