# Thermal Conductivity

Written by Jerry Ratzlaff on . Posted in Thermodynamics Thermal conductivity, abbreviated as k, is the ability to transfer heat within a material without any motion of the material.  Depending on the material, the transfer rate will vary.  The lower the conductivity, the slower the transfer.  The higher the conductivity, the faster the transfer.

Typical thermal conductivity values for non-metallic solids can be found here.

## Formulas that use Thermal Conductivity

 $$\large{ k = \frac{Q \; l}{A \; \Delta T} }$$ $$\large{ k = \frac{Q \; l}{A \; \left( T_h \;- \; T_l \right) } }$$ $$\large{ k = \alpha \; \rho \; Q }$$ $$\large{ k = \frac{ h \; l_c }{ Nu } }$$ (Nusselt number) $$\large{ k = \frac { v \; \rho \; C \; l_c }{ Pe } }$$ (Peclet number)

### Where:

$$\large{ k }$$ = thermal conductivity

$$\large{ A }$$ = area of object

$$\large{ l_c }$$ = characteristic length

$$\large{ \rho }$$  (Greek symbol rho) = density

$$\large{ C }$$ = heat capacity

$$\large{ h }$$ = heat transfer coefficient

$$\large{ l }$$ = length or thickness of material

$$\large{ Nu }$$ = Nusselt number

$$\large{ Pe }$$ = Peclet number

$$\large{ Q }$$ = specific heat capacity

$$\large{ \Delta T }$$ = temperature differential

$$\large{ T_h }$$ = high temperature

$$\large{ T_l }$$ = low temperature

$$\large{ \alpha }$$  (Greek symbol alpha) = thermal diffusivity

$$\large{ v }$$ = velocity