Thermal energy management, especially cooling, is becoming increasingly important in today’s high energy consumption world. Passive cooling, which does not require additional energy consumption, could be an effective approach to thermal energy management. We analyzed spectral selective thermal emitters by investigating the performance of a type of passive cooling known as radiative cooling. Our results can be used to improve radiative cooling. As we can control the radiation characteristics of Metal-dielectric-metal (MDM) structures, we developed an MDM-based spectral selective emitter. We measured the spectral emissivity of the fabricated MDM structure in the direction of the zenith and at an incline. We also simulated structures of different sizes to determine the effect of varying the size of the structure on the emissivity. Finally, we calculated the radiative cooling performance of the selectively emissive surface. In these calculations, we considered temperature changes caused by atmospheric and surface radiation. The radiative cooling performance of our MDM-based spectral selective emitter was better than the cooling performance of a non-selective emitter. The surface temperature of the best MDM spectral selective emitter was 38 °C below the ambient temperature.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Mechanics of Materials
- Mechanical Engineering