WIT Press

Novel thermal insulation with gas-filled cavities – assessment of thermal performance of different designs based on numerical simulations of heat transfer


Free (open access)


Volume 7 (2019), Issue 2



Page Range

181 - 192

Paper DOI



WIT Press


Miha Jukić, Sabina Jordan, Danijel Lisičić


Not only is the energy efficiency of buildings nowadays becoming more and more important; the legislative requirements, the people’s awareness of the environmental questions and their thermal com- fort expectations are also on a much higher level. all of these issues can be addressed by making the building envelope more thermally resistant. however, with the traditional thermal insulation materials the thickness of thermal insulation layers is already at the viable limits. Therefore, the development of new, more efficient thermal insulation products with a higher thermal resistance is highly promoted. Preliminary research results can be applied to models to develop and confirm the conceptual designs of such new materials. In this paper, an analysis of thermal performance is presented for a novel thermal insulation consisting of graphite polystyrene (gPS) matrix with cavities filled with an insulative gas, and a protective sheath to prevent it from leaking. bearing in mind the suitability for later production, differ- ent configurations of the assembly were considered, regarding the matrix geometry, the type of the gas filling, and the surface emissivity of the cavities. a range of numerical simulations of heat transfer was conducted to determine the efficiency of different designs in reducing the conductive, the convective, and the radiative heat transfer. advantages, limitations and some detailed parameters of the proposed design concepts were determined, which were then used for optimisation. The analysis of the results indicates that the equivalent thermal conductance of a gPS panel can be significantly reduced by the introduction of gas-filled cavities. The reduction is highly dependent on the type of the gas filling (ther- mal conductivity, viscosity, specific heat, etc.), the size of the cavities, and the cavity surface emissivity. 


gas-filled cavities, graphite polystyrene, numerical simulation, thermal insulation.