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Trisha Banerjee @ 2010

Whole setup of the experiment:-

Mercury
thermometers

Steam chamber

Disc ( between the material is


sandwitched)
Trisha Banerjee @ 2010
The coefficient of thermal conductivity of bad conductors ( ebonite , rubber,
glass etc) is determined by taking the specimen in the form of a flat disc.

the experimental disc D is sandwitched between a metallic heavy


bottomed cylindrical steam chamber S and a brass disc B . The whole
assembly is suspended from a heavy retort stand . The lower part of the
chamber S and the disc B are varnished and carry mercury thermometers T1
and T2 respectively inserted in the holes drilled in them.

Trisha Banerjee @ 2010


Trisha Banerjee @ 2010
In order to perform the experiment , steam is passed through the chamber S and the
temperatures shown by the thermometer T1 and T2 are recorded turn by turn until they
become steady. In this steady state , the arte of heat conducted through the experimental
disc D is equal to the rate of heat radiated from the exposed surface of the disc B.

let q1 and q2 be the steady temperature shown by the thermometers T1 and T2


respectively . Since both S and B are very good conductors of heat q1 and q2 may be taken
sufficiently as the temperature of the upper and lower disc D. therefore the rate of heat
conducted through the disc D is KA(q1-q2)/d

where ,K is the coefficient of thermal conductivity of the material of the disc D, A is the
area of the cross section , and d is the thickness of the disc D.
now if the m be the mass of the disc B and s is the specific heat , then the rate of
heat radiated from B is ms(dq1/dt)at q=q2 .

where (dq/dt)at q=q2 is the rate of cooling of the disc B at the temperature q2.
In the steady state , the rate of heat conducted through D equals trhe rate of heat radiated
from B.therefore lastly we have

K= (msd)/A(q1-q2) (dq/dt) at q=q2.

Trisha Banerjee @ 2010


Procedure:-
a) measure the thickness d of the specimen . Determine the mass m and the radius of
the lower disc . sandwitch the specimen between the steam chamber and the lower disc
. Insert the thermometer T1 and the T2 into the holes provided for them.

b) Suspend the assembly from threads and allow the steam to pass through the
steam chamber . Wait till steady state , the thermometers do not register any change in
its temeperatureq1 and q2.

c) take out the lower disc and suspend it above .Heat it till its temperature rises
abou10 degrees above q2 and then, put the specimen over its top surface. Allow to cool
the disc till its temperature fall 10 degree below q2 and during the cooling process , note
down the temperature every minute. Draw cooling curve by plotting time on X- axis and
temperature on q on Y- axis . Draw a tangent at a point corresponding to the
temperature q2.

Trisha Banerjee @ 2010


Note:-

result will came in Joule per second per meter per degree
Celsius.

the formula is valid for thin specimen because in the


derivation the heat loss from its curved surface has been
neglected.

Trisha Banerjee @ 2010