What is Conduction?

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Conduction is a term used to describe the process of transferring heat from point to another using a substance. The speed at which heat passes through a substance differs from one substance to another. Metallic substances are considered to be good conductors of heat because the speed at which heat is transmitted through them is fast. Stones are moderate conductors of heat while substances such as paper, cloth and wood are considered poor conductors of heat since they speed at which heat moves through them is extremely slow. Different substances are usually researched to determine the way they transmit heat. The substances are allotted numbers that reflect the rates at which they conduct heat. Each substance is rated with reference to silver, a substance that has a heat transmission rate of 100. The rate of heat transmission in other substances moves down the coefficient scale e.g. copper substances have a coefficient rate of 92, iron 11, water 12 and wood 0.3. An excellent vacuum has a heat transmission rate of zero.

Application of Heat Conduction

Each day, various heat conduction rates are used by people as they go about their daily lives. For instance, when someone wraps a cloth holder on a metal pot holder or a frying pan, this ensures that heat does not reach the hand of the person holding the substance. The cloth holder stops the heat from passing on because it is a bad conductor of heat. Also, there are instances where manufacturers develop pot or pan handles using substances that are bad conductors of heat like wood. Substances that are bad conductors of heat are also referred to as heat insulators. When locked in an enclosed area, air is a perfect insulating substance. It is the air trapped between fur, fiber, or feathers in wool clothes, down feathers, fur coats and loose fibers that makes them warm.

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