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Heat transfer problem

  1. Nov 22, 2007 #1
    First off I would like to say that this is not a homework question. I am trying to calculate the temperature of a very thin piece of steel.


    The underside of the metal is perfectly insulated
    To = 20C (initial temperature of material)
    Q"=3000W/m^2 (heat flux)
    K = 51.9W/m*K (thermal conductivity)
    C = .472 KJ/Kg*K ( specific heat)
    x = 1mm ( thickness of metal)
    t = 0.1s

    What I need to know is how to calculate the final temperature at the surface.
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 25, 2008 #2
    Am I right in thinking you are doing some laser heating here? if so you should look at
    the paper written by Bechtel "heating of solid targets with laser pulses" . Also check out the citations there are a lot of papers out there that solve this kind of problem
  4. Apr 25, 2008 #3


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    This is a transient conduction problem that can be made much easier by assuming you only need to know the temperature about a second after the heat flux is turned off, not before. The reason is that the characteristic diffusion time through 1 mm of steel is about a tenth of a second:

    [tex]t\approx\frac{h^2}{D}=\frac{h^2 c \rho}{k}\approx 0.1\,\mathrm{sec}[/tex]

    where D is the thermal diffusivity and h is the thickness, and I've used your numbers. After about a second, the temperature will have become nearly uniform in the plate, and the temperature increase can be calculated by considering the amount of input energy: 300 J/m2.

    [tex]\Delta T=\frac{E}{c\rho h}[/tex]

    I get about a tenth of a degree Celsius for the temperature increase. Does this help?
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