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Heat properties

  1. Mar 3, 2015 #1

    is there a reference, wikipedia article, other article, book, or something
    that will outline consisely and simply, without the maths (not necessary at this point)
    the thermal properties of materials

    what I mean thermal properties?
    how materials interact with heat

    for example, how do we say the ability of a material not to transfer/transmit heat?
    how do we say the ability of a material to hold the heat inside and not giving it out to the environment?
    how do we say the ability of a material to transfer heat and not keep it itself and that staying cool?
    how do we say the ability of a material to be very slow in taking heat from the environment and when it takes it to keep it in it by increasing its temperature, instead of transmitting it to the environment?
    some materials may also keep the heat they take in them by increasing its temperature, but may be EASY to take the heat from the environment

    as you can imagine, there are many parameters when dealing with heat and the environment

    for example, one parameter is the easiness to get heat from the environment
    other parameter is the easiness to give heat to the environment
    (these two may NOT be the same)
    other parameter is the capacity to store heat or not

    can you write here for me a comprehensive guide please, with the relevant terminology, which I am after

    because I need to choose a material that:
    does not take heat from the environment easily
    when it does it keeps in its self
    when it keeps it in itself, it can rise its temperature unlimitedly high
    and it does not give it easily out

  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 3, 2015 #2

    I think the majority of your concerns can be solved looking at the materials thermal conductivity. The thermal conductivity is basically a materials ability to transfer heat through conduction, or the transfer of heat through a material. You may have heard this referred to as a materials "R-Value". Here is a link to the Wikipedia page on thermal conductivity: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thermal_conductivity. To clarify, the thermal conductivity is a value which describes a materials ability to transfer heat, so the lower he thermal conductivity, the better it will resist heat transfer.

    A simple example would be to think of a beer bottle vs a beer can. The thermal conductivity of the beer bottle is less than the thermal conductivity of the beer can. If you take both of them out of the cooler at the same time, and place them on a table in the sun, the heat from the exterior of the beer can will transfer through the aluminum can faster than the glass bottle. Therefore the beer in the can would become warm faster that the beer in the bottle.

    I hope this helps!
  4. Mar 3, 2015 #3


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  5. Mar 3, 2015 #4
    exactly, it's not only heat conductivity, it's also heat capacity
    maybe others?
  6. Mar 3, 2015 #5


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    That would be a thermal insulator with an infinite melting point and infinite thermal stability.
    If you find such a material NASA, among others, will be very interested.
    Heat capacity has no effect on your given specifications so you don't need to worry about that.

    Here's a start on where current tech. is:


    These two are exactly the same. Thermal conductivity is the reciprocal of thermal resistivity.
    I am no physicist but I don't think the universe could exist if that were not the case, or at least it would be vastly different.
  7. Mar 4, 2015 #6
    VIP panels are also pretty neat. Very high R-Value, and can be easier to work with than aerogels depending on the application. I'm thinking of fiber suspended aerogels.
  8. Mar 4, 2015 #7
    Billy Joule haha...brilliant name
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