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Title: Material-controlled dynamic vacuum insulation

A compact vacuum insulation panel comprising a chamber enclosed by two sheets of metal, glass-like spaces disposed in the chamber between the sidewalls, and a high-grade vacuum in the chamber includes apparatus and methods for enabling and disabling, or turning "on" and "off" the thermal insulating capability of the panel. One type of enabling and disabling apparatus and method includes a metal hydride for releasing hydrogen gas into the chamber in response to heat, and a hydrogen grate between the metal hydride and the chamber for selectively preventing and allowing return of the hydrogen gas to the metal hydride. Another type of enabling and disabling apparatus and method includes a variable emissivity coating on the sheets of metal in which the emissivity is controllably variable by heat or electricity. Still another type of enabling and disabling apparatus and method includes metal-to-metal contact devices that can be actuated to establish or break metal-to-metal heat paths or thermal short circuits between the metal sidewalls.
 [1];  [2]
  1. (14154 W. First Dr., Golden, CO 80401)
  2. (515 S. Magnolia La., Denver, CO 80224)
Issue Date:
OSTI Identifier:
Benson, David K. (14154 W. First Dr., Golden, CO 80401);Potter, Thomas F. (515 S. Magnolia La., Denver, CO 80224) CHO
Patent Number(s):
US 5562154
Application Number:
Contract Number:
Research Org:
Midwest Research Institute
Sponsoring Org:
Country of Publication:
United States
material-controlled; dynamic; vacuum; insulation; compact; panel; comprising; chamber; enclosed; sheets; metal; glass-like; spaces; disposed; sidewalls; high-grade; apparatus; methods; enabling; disabling; thermal; insulating; capability; type; method; hydride; releasing; hydrogen; gas; response; heat; grate; selectively; preventing; allowing; return; variable; emissivity; coating; controllably; electricity; metal-to-metal; contact; devices; actuated; establish; break; paths; circuits; releasing hydrogen; dynamic vacuum; metal contact; vacuum insulation; hydrogen gas; metal hydride; thermal insulating; insulation panel; disabling apparatus; compact vacuum; spaces disposed; metal heat; selectively preventing; break metal-to-metal; allowing return; metal-to-metal heat; chamber enclosed; panel comprising; metal-to-metal contact; metal sidewalls; variable emissivity; emissivity coating; contact devices; heat paths; glass-like spaces; controllably variable; hydrogen grate; high-grade vacuum; insulating capability; metal sidewall; /165/52/