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Conduction is caused by the random motion of atoms and molecules. As such, it is an ineffective mechanism for heat transport over macroscopic distances and short time distances. Take, for example, the temperature on the Earth, which would be unbearably cold during the night and extremely hot during the day if heat transport in the atmosphere was to be only through conduction. In another example, car engines would overheat unless there was a more efficient way to remove excess heat from the pistons.

How does the rate of heat transfer by conduction change when all spatial dimensions are doubled?

Because area is the product of two spatial dimensions, it increases by a factor of four when each dimension is doubled A final = ( 2 d ) 2 = 4 d 2 = 4 A initial size 12{A rSub { size 8{"final"} } = \( 2d \) rSup { size 8{2} } =4d rSup { size 8{2} } =4A rSub { size 8{i"nitial"} } } {} . The distance, however, simply doubles. Because the temperature difference and the coefficient of thermal conductivity are independent of the spatial dimensions, the rate of heat transfer by conduction increases by a factor of four divided by two, or two:

Q t final = kA final T 2 T 1 d final = k 4A initial T 2 T 1 2d initial = 2 kA initial T 2 T 1 d initial = 2 Q t initial . size 12{ left ( { {Q} over {t} } right ) rSub { size 8{"final"} } = { { ital "kA" rSub { size 8{"final"} } left (T rSub { size 8{2} } - T rSub { size 8{1} } right )} over {d rSub { size 8{"final"} } } } = { {k left (4A rSub { size 8{"initial"} } right ) left (T rSub { size 8{2} } - T rSub { size 8{1} } right )} over {2d rSub { size 8{"initial"} } } } =2 { { ital "kA" rSub { size 8{"initial"} } left (T rSub { size 8{2} } - T rSub { size 8{1} } right )} over {d rSub { size 8{"initial"} } } } =2 left ( { {Q} over {t} } right ) rSub { size 8{"initial"} } } {}


  • Heat conduction is the transfer of heat between two objects in direct contact with each other.
  • The rate of heat transfer Q / t size 12{Q/t} {} (energy per unit time) is proportional to the temperature difference T 2 T 1 size 12{T rSub { size 8{2} } - T rSub { size 8{1} } } {} and the contact area A size 12{A} {} and inversely proportional to the distance d size 12{d} {} between the objects:
    Q t = kA T 2 T 1 d . size 12{ { {Q} over {t} } = { { ital "kA"` left (T rSub { size 8{2} } - T rSub { size 8{1} } right )} over {d} } } {}

Conceptual questions

Some electric stoves have a flat ceramic surface with heating elements hidden beneath. A pot placed over a heating element will be heated, while it is safe to touch the surface only a few centimeters away. Why is ceramic, with a conductivity less than that of a metal but greater than that of a good insulator, an ideal choice for the stove top?

Loose-fitting white clothing covering most of the body is ideal for desert dwellers, both in the hot Sun and during cold evenings. Explain how such clothing is advantageous during both day and night.

The figure shows a group of musicians wearing long, loose-fitting lightly colored robes that go down to their feet.
A jellabiya is worn by many men in Egypt. (credit: Zerida)


(a) Calculate the rate of heat conduction through house walls that are 13.0 cm thick and that have an average thermal conductivity twice that of glass wool. Assume there are no windows or doors. The surface area of the walls is 120 m 2 and their inside surface is at 18. C , while their outside surface is at 5 .00º C . (b) How many 1-kW room heaters would be needed to balance the heat transfer due to conduction?

(a) 1.01 × 10 3 W

(b) One

The rate of heat conduction out of a window on a winter day is rapid enough to chill the air next to it. To see just how rapidly the windows transfer heat by conduction, calculate the rate of conduction in watts through a 3 . 00-m 2 window that is 0 .635 cm size 12{0 "." "635"`"cm"} {} thick (1/4 in) if the temperatures of the inner and outer surfaces are 5 .00ºC and 10 . C , respectively. This rapid rate will not be maintained—the inner surface will cool, and even result in frost formation.

Calculate the rate of heat conduction out of the human body, assuming that the core internal temperature is 37 . C , the skin temperature is 34 . C , the thickness of the tissues between averages 1 .00 cm , and the surface area is 1 . 40 m 2 .

84.0 W

Questions & Answers

where we get a research paper on Nano chemistry....?
Maira Reply
nanopartical of organic/inorganic / physical chemistry , pdf / thesis / review
what are the products of Nano chemistry?
Maira Reply
There are lots of products of nano chemistry... Like nano coatings.....carbon fiber.. And lots of others..
Even nanotechnology is pretty much all about chemistry... Its the chemistry on quantum or atomic level
no nanotechnology is also a part of physics and maths it requires angle formulas and some pressure regarding concepts
Preparation and Applications of Nanomaterial for Drug Delivery
Hafiz Reply
Application of nanotechnology in medicine
what is variations in raman spectra for nanomaterials
Jyoti Reply
ya I also want to know the raman spectra
I only see partial conversation and what's the question here!
Crow Reply
what about nanotechnology for water purification
RAW Reply
please someone correct me if I'm wrong but I think one can use nanoparticles, specially silver nanoparticles for water treatment.
yes that's correct
I think
Nasa has use it in the 60's, copper as water purification in the moon travel.
nanocopper obvius
what is the stm
Brian Reply
is there industrial application of fullrenes. What is the method to prepare fullrene on large scale.?
industrial application...? mmm I think on the medical side as drug carrier, but you should go deeper on your research, I may be wrong
How we are making nano material?
what is a peer
What is meant by 'nano scale'?
What is STMs full form?
scanning tunneling microscope
how nano science is used for hydrophobicity
Do u think that Graphene and Fullrene fiber can be used to make Air Plane body structure the lightest and strongest. Rafiq
what is differents between GO and RGO?
what is simplest way to understand the applications of nano robots used to detect the cancer affected cell of human body.? How this robot is carried to required site of body cell.? what will be the carrier material and how can be detected that correct delivery of drug is done Rafiq
analytical skills graphene is prepared to kill any type viruses .
Any one who tell me about Preparation and application of Nanomaterial for drug Delivery
what is Nano technology ?
Bob Reply
write examples of Nano molecule?
The nanotechnology is as new science, to scale nanometric
nanotechnology is the study, desing, synthesis, manipulation and application of materials and functional systems through control of matter at nanoscale
Is there any normative that regulates the use of silver nanoparticles?
Damian Reply
what king of growth are you checking .?
What fields keep nano created devices from performing or assimulating ? Magnetic fields ? Are do they assimilate ?
Stoney Reply
why we need to study biomolecules, molecular biology in nanotechnology?
Adin Reply
yes I'm doing my masters in nanotechnology, we are being studying all these domains as well..
what school?
biomolecules are e building blocks of every organics and inorganic materials.
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Source:  OpenStax, College physics ii. OpenStax CNX. Nov 29, 2012 Download for free at http://legacy.cnx.org/content/col11458/1.2
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