Go to Polygence Scholars page
Sushanth Elangovan's cover illustration
Polygence Scholar2021
Sushanth Elangovan's profile

Sushanth Elangovan

Frisco High SchoolClass of 2024Mckinney, Texas



  • "Measuring the relative thermal conductivities of insulations comprised of different densities of newspaper" with mentor Jessica (Working project)

Project Portfolio

Measuring the relative thermal conductivities of insulations comprised of different densities of newspaper

Started Jan. 27, 2022

Abstract or project description

In many developing countries, the harsh environments produce an unsuitable lifestyle for the people. In extreme temperatures, one needs to stay comfortable in their home, but with inefficient materials to withstand the intense climate, life becomes difficult. Having adequate insulation in homes can be a good solution to stay comfortable in these conditions. Additionally, discarded waste is another huge problem in these countries as there are huge piles of trash laying all over the ground. Thus, this project solves two problems, reducing the amount of waste in developing countries and accessibly improving the insulation of homes. The goal of this project is to achieve the best form of insulation that is viable, cheap, and human-made, and can be implemented in homes in many developing countries. When comparing insulations, there are a number of relevant factors to consider such as density, air seal quality, thermal conductivity, and moisture content. We expect to see that a tighter and moisture-free insulation will achieve a lower thermal conductivity providing better insulation overall. The model of our wall will include two layers of sheetrock, each representing the inner and outer wall of the home. In between the sheetrock will be pegs of 2x4 wood, to construct the cavity that we will place our insulation in. For our ideas of testing the insulation, my mentor and I were thinking of taking a big, yet thin sheet of paper, folding/cutting it and making it as compact as possible. We will then fit that insulation into the cavity that we constructed. Additionally, we can come up with ways to make sure that the insulation will always stay moisture free, and this can be done with moisture retardants. After finishing the construction of the model, we will then begin to test. For the testing, we will use 4 thermocouples to record the temperatures of the exterior wall, the side behind the exterior wall and before the insulation, the side of the interior wall behind the insulation, and finally the interior wall of the home. After placing the thermocouples, we will turn on a heat lamp facing the exterior wall and start taking the measurements. Because we are using a thermocouple recorder, after clicking on the start button, the recorder will transfer the measurements of the thermocouples into an SD card. Once the experiment is done, we can view the measurements by inserting the SD card into a computer. The experiment will conclude when the interior wall’s temperature stops fluctuating. Later, we will take those measurements and compile them into a graph to compare the material’s efficiency and ability of insulation. Whichever insulation took the longest to reach steady state is the most efficient one. At the end of these experiments I will write a paper to be submitted to ArXv. I will also submit to an appropriate journal or conference.